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Carmen: A Hip Hopera (2001)

PG-13 | | Musical, Drama | TV Movie 8 May 2001
0:59 | Trailer

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Based on Bizet's classic opera and its all African American musical counterpart Carmen Jones, Carmen a Hiphopera is a modern retelling of the story of the tragic gypsy Carmen. The setting ... See full summary »


Robert Townsend


Michael Elliot
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Mekhi Phifer ... Hill
Beyoncé ... Carmen Brown (as Beyoncé Knowles)
Yasiin Bey ... Lt. Miller (as Mos Def)
Rah Digga ... Rasheeda
Joy Bryant ... Nikki
Wyclef Jean ... Fortune Teller
Da Brat ... Narrator
Jermaine Dupri ... Pockets
Shad Moss ... Jalil (as Lil' Bow Wow)
Casey Lee ... Blaze
Reagan Gomez-Preston ... Caela
Sam Sarpong ... Nathaniel
Troy Winbush ... Sgt. Tony Porter
Fred Williamson ... Lou
Yuri Brown ... Nori


Based on Bizet's classic opera and its all African American musical counterpart Carmen Jones, Carmen a Hiphopera is a modern retelling of the story of the tragic gypsy Carmen. The setting has been taken from the hots streets of Barcelona and is now in scorching urban Philadelphia. This time Carmen Brown is an aspiring actress who in her own words 'leaves the whole town speechless.' Her sultry looks and carefree confidence attract the attention of everyone from crooked cop Luietenant Miller to famous rapper Blaze. However Carmen has eyes on the one man she can't have- Seargeant Derrick Hill who is engaged. Yet nothing stops Carmen Brown getting what she wants- except perhaps a trip to LA and an ominous tarot cards prophecy. Written by LadyN1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Musical | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, sensuality, and drug content | See all certifications »






Release Date:

8 May 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Carmen Brown See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Based upon Georges Bizet's 1875 opera Carmen. See more »


Blaze: Hello, I'm Blaze. But my friends call me Case...
[Carmen cuts him off]
Carmen: I know who you are. I'm Carmen.
Blaze: Nice to meet you.
Carmen: Nice to meet you.
Blaze: So what's a fine lady like you doing in Philly? Small town masquerading as a big city.
Carmen: I won't be here for long. See I have dreams... plans.
Blaze: I wanna hear about 'em.
Carmen: [sucks teeth] Pssh. No, you don't.
Blaze: No, really. I'm interested.
See more »


Remake of Carmen Jones (1954) See more »


Blaze Rehearsal
Written by Sekani Williams
Performed by Casey Lee
See more »

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User Reviews

This old white fuddy-duddy LIKED it!
15 December 2001 | by jtur88See all my reviews

I'm in my 60's and I live far from any exposure to African-American culture. I always found Rap to be pretty annoying. But I stumbled across this on cable, and I really liked it. It helps that "Umbrellas of Cherbourg" is one of my all-time favorite films, and this had a very similar flavor. One refreshing feature of the film was the authenticity of the language. It always irritates me to see black kids in the ghetto (movie version) speaking something that sounds too close to acting-school English. The cast of this fiom, apparently, did not consist of trained actors who enunciated clearly in a ghetto-esque parody, but people who live and talk in that culture all the time, and it sounded real. At the same time, it was not so steeped in arcane under-culture talk that I could not understand it. So, 5 stars out of 5 for overcoming the language problem that mainstream films are so challenged by. I'd have liked more music---quite a bit of the dialogue was spoken in normal conversation---a lot more could have been put to music, since the commitment had already been made to use that device. I think the pace of the musicalized dialogue was very, very well done in terms of matching body language. Nobody seemed uncomfortable with the exchanges, or impatient for the imposed rhythm to catch up with the reaction. A neat job. Overall, this is a finely-tuned, slick vehicle that works. Whatever you think of African Americans or their music or their culture, this is a nice film that will perhaps endear you to this charming entourage.

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