Boaz Yakin Escaped Hollywood and Made His Most Personal Movie in 30 Years

Boaz Yakin Escaped Hollywood and Made His Most Personal Movie in 30 Years
The 1994 Sundance Film Festival may have been immortalized by Kevin Smith’s “Clerks,” but Boaz Yakin’s debut “Fresh” made out well enough. After scripting “Punisher” and “The Rookie,” Yakin directed a spry African American crime drama that put his career on a steady upward trajectory. That culminated in 2000 football hit “Remember the Titans,” which grossed $136.7 million and suggested a bright future in the studio system.

Yakin, however, wasn’t sure he wanted that. His latest movie, “Aviva,” marks his most personal movie in 30 years — and only would have been possible with those decades of roadblocks behind him. “I was a super-hot director after ‘Remember the Titans,’ and everyone in Hollywood wanted to work with me,” the 53-year-old New Yorker said in a recent interview. “I was being offered gigantic movies. I just had this moment where I was like, oh no, if I go down this road, I’m
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