6.8/10
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Bojangles (2001)

Trailer
1:22 | Trailer
The life of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, African-American tap-dancing star of stage and screen.

Director:

Joseph Sargent

Writers:

Richard Wesley, Robert Johnson (as Robert P. Johnson) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gregory Hines ... Bojangles
Peter Riegert ... Marty
Kimberly Elise ... Fannie
Maria Ricossa ... Rae
Savion Glover ... Newcomer
Linette Doherty ... Elaine (as Linette Robinson)
Jonathan Higgins ... Zanuck
Lea Marie Golde Lea Marie Golde ... Shirley
Novie Edwards ... Clarissa
Jackie Richardson ... Bedella
Caliaf St. Aubin Caliaf St. Aubin ... Luther (as Caliaf St. Aubyn)
Aaron Meeks Aaron Meeks ... William (Young Percy)
Donovon Ian H. McKnight Donovon Ian H. McKnight ... Lem (as Donovon Hunter McKnight)
Philip Akin Philip Akin ... Williamson
Arnold Pinnock ... Lincoln
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Storyline

The life of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, African-American tap-dancing star of stage and screen. In 1916, Robinson was a successful vaudeville performer and considered the finest tap dancer of his generation. At the peak of his career, he was the highest paid Black entertainer, but for all the joy he gave others, his life was anything but happy, there was a great deal of tragedy in himself. He died broke and penniless. Written by Ulf Kjell Gür

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

tap dancing | based on book | See All (2) »

Taglines:

The dancing was real. The smile was not. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Bojangles" was a left foot lead tap dancer, whereas Gregory Hines was a right foot lead tap dance. Hines had to learn tap with his left foot first, which is highlighted at the end of the movie when there is a side-by-side comparison of the two doing "Bojangles" specialty, the dancing staircase. See more »

Connections

References The Littlest Rebel (1935) See more »

User Reviews

The tapping is the best part, but an overall fine, fine film.
11 July 2001 | by TxMikeSee all my reviews

This story about the life of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson begins in 1916, when after his performance he meets the young pharmacology student who he eventually marries. She was about 20, he was in his early 40s. The film ends about 30 years later, with what looks like original footage of his funeral procession in NYC. To 99% of the people "Bo" was a great and generous person and entertainer. To the other 1% who knew him intimately, he was apparently a real S.O.B.

A compulsive gambler and womanizer, his life was pretty close to a happy trainwreck. Dancing professionally until past the age of 65, he suffered with heart problems and died at age 71. During his prime he was the highest-paid black performer, and he was the black dancer in some of the early Shirley Temple movies.

The film is based on his biography, co-produced by star Gregory Hines, so I assume it is an accurate protrayal. In general I like fact-based films best, and I really like this one. I rate it "8" of 10. I also am a big fan of great dancing, and this film has that. I consider Hines not only a superb actor, but also one of the best modern dancers, and his portrayal of "Bojangles" seems so perfect. However, the real highlight for me is 1 hour 16 minutes into the film, when the newcomer kid, played by Savion Glover, does a routine that dazzles Bojangles, then they do a routine together in the dingy nightclub. The whole scene with all the tapping only lasts about 3 minutes, but it is a remarkable 3 minutes.

The DVD is very simple, no access to a menu, no digital sound, no extras. It is a Showtime movie.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 February 2001 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo | Dolby (Dolby Surround)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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