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The Color of Friendship (2000)

A white South African girl finds herself in a difficult situation when she is sent to spend a term with a black family in America.

Director:

Kevin Hooks

Writer:

Paris Qualles
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Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Greg Beeman
Stars: Erik von Detten, Sam Horrigan, Christina Vidal
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lindsey Haun ... Mahree Bok
Shadia Simmons ... Piper Dellums
Carl Lumbly ... Ron Dellums
Penny Johnson Jerald ... Roscoe Dellums (as Penny Johnson)
Anthony Burnett Anthony Burnett ... Brandy Dellums
Travis Kyle Davis Travis Kyle Davis ... Erik Dellums (as Travis Davis)
Melanie Nicholls-King ... Flora
Susan Danford Susan Danford ... Merle Bok
Stephen Jennings Stephen Jennings ... Pieter Bok
Michael Kanev Michael Kanev ... Rian Bok
Ahmad Stoner ... Daniel
Ryan Cooley ... Billy
David Rosser David Rosser ... Reporter #1
Michelyn Emelle Michelyn Emelle ... Reporter #2
Erik Kilpatrick Erik Kilpatrick ... Turner
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Storyline

Mahree Bok lives on a farm in South Africa. Her father is a policeman who cannot hide his joy when activist Steve Biko is caught by the South African authorities. Piper Dellums is the daughter of a US congressman from California and who lives in a nice home in Washington DC. When Mahree is chosen to spend a semester at the Dellums' house, she doesn't expect that her host family would be black. Nor do her hosts suspect that she is not a black South African. Written by Dragomir R. Radev <radev@cs.columbia.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Look beyond black and white and you'll find...The Color of Friendship


Certificate:

TV-G

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Canada | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 February 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Die Farbe der Feundschaft See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The real Erik Dellums, son of former Congressman Ron Dellums, appears in a cameo. See more »

Goofs

When Mahree gets the birthday cake in the mall, the sparkler candle goes from being out to burning again between shots. It also goes from being straight to leaning to the right to straight again. See more »

Quotes

Ron Dellums: I have a friend, a new friend, from South Africa. And this friend recently told me about a unique bird found in her country. And what is remarkable about this bird is not that it nests, for all birds nest, but that this particular bird nests in a community all unrelated to each other and all of different colors. This community of different colors and different birds has one common goal: to care for each other. We are a world of people, not ethnic groups, not races, and not different ...
See more »

Connections

References Freaky Friday (1976) See more »

Soundtracks

Soljiering On
Written by Sammy Burdson, Jean Claude Madonne
Courtesy of Associated Production Music
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Real Kids, Real Issues
4 February 2009 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

When I was watching The Color Of Friendship the only question I had was how a film like this was made at the Disney Studio. The answer is that it wasn't though it was distributed and exhibited by the folks at the Magic Kingdom. It's a film of rare insight and social significance, unlike the usual stuff you get from Disney.

In 1977 Congressman Ron Dellums through an incredible bit of bureaucratic snafuing got to host an African child as part of an exchange program. But our color blind applications don't take into account that he could and did wind up with a young girl from the apartheid Union Of South Africa. Her arrival proves to be a learning experience all around except sadly for her South African peers.

The Color Of Friendship works as well as it does because of the casting and chemistry of Shadia Simmons as Pieper Dellums and Lindsey Haun as Mahree Bok. What I liked most about The Color Of Friendship is that these two young ladies acted like real kids instead of Hollywood kids you see on so many shows.

The other thing about The Color Of Friendship is the hope it shows. We older folks live with so many built in prejudices and feelings and the hope of the world is that the younger generations as they come see past more and more of them. In another film about South Africa, a black character says to Donald Sutherland that it's all going to work out in the end because your son will not believe their lies. As we see here, young Ms. Haun does question the racist assumptions that the apartheid South Africa was built on.

Carl Lumbly, best known for playing Detective Petrie on Cagney&Lacey, plays Ron Dellums who is now Mayor of Oakland, California. Lumbly is fine in the part although if you look at pictures of Ron Dellums, he could be Morgan Freeman's twin brother. But I guess the producers could not afford Morgan Freeman. Penny Johnson plays Roscoe Dellums who sadly in real life got divorced from Ron Dellums many years after 1977 when this film is set. Her character is from the Phylicia Rashad school of mothers, that's not a put down.

Filmed in 2000 The Color Of Friendship turned out happily to be be a harbinger of things to come in South Africa. Don't miss this film if the Disney Channel ever broadcasts it again.


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