Melvin Van Peebles stunned the world for the first time, with his debut feature, The Story of a Three Day Pass. Filmed in France and selected as the French entry in the San Francisco Film Festival, Melvin's film was awarded the top prize. Saying it was controversial would be an understatement. In 1968 for a black man to walk up to the podium and accept the top festival award for a film he had to go abroad to make--now that's how you make your mark. After his comedy, Watermelon Man, Melvin was determined to push the Hollywood boundaries with the groundbreaking, and even more controversial, Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song. Turned down by every major studio including Columbia, where he had a three-picture deal, Melvin was forced to basically self-finance. Risking everything he had, Melvin delivered to the world the first Black Ghetto hero on the big screen--whether they were ready or not. More than 30 years later, history is being fashioned again in the telling of this very tale. Mario...Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Forty-seven minutes into the film, Van Peebles hands his lead actress a few fifties to be in his film and they are the new $50 bills. See more »
Melvin Van Peebles:
Is this something negative, Priscilla? Because if it's negative, I can't even deal with it right now. I'm a broke, pissed off nigger from Chicago, and I'm down to my last cigar.
See more »
Real-life participants of the production of "Sweet Sweetback's..." give testimony during the closing credits, including Earth, Wind & Fire founding member Maurice White, who confirmed the "bounced check" story. Melvin Van Peebles himself appears onscreen when the credits finish. See more »
Up & Down
Performed by Niki J. Crawford
New Dog Old Trix Publishing, Country Girl Entertainment
Written by (c) Adam Hirsh, Niki J. Crawford
Courtesy of Treehouse Music Inc., Country Girl Entertainment See more »
Man this one was awesome,the movie just blew me away!As a black man and a movie buff i always knew about melvin van peebles and his great contribution, not just to ethnic filmmakers but to all entertainment as a whole.This man was 1 of the pioneer who truly changed entertainment as we know it.Filmmakers of less talent and courage get credit and attention while a man of true importance gets ignored.This was one of the most inspirational movies i have ever seen(view from the top was another)if you have a dream,i don't care what it is, this movie will make you want to push to the max to achieve it!great movie check it french
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