Black Biopics

by chrystaaal | created - 11 Aug 2018 | updated - 3 months ago | Public
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1. Marshall (2017)

PG-13 | 118 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

66 Metascore

The story of Thurgood Marshall, the crusading lawyer who would become the first African-American Supreme Court Justice, as he battles through one of his career-defining cases.

Director: Reginald Hudlin | Stars: Chadwick Boseman, Josh Gad, Kate Hudson, Sterling K. Brown

Votes: 16,395 | Gross: $10.05M

2. Get on Up (2014)

PG-13 | 139 min | Biography, Drama, Music

71 Metascore

A chronicle of James Brown's rise from extreme poverty to become one of the most influential musicians in history.

Director: Tate Taylor | Stars: Chadwick Boseman, Nelsan Ellis, Dan Aykroyd, Viola Davis

Votes: 19,540 | Gross: $30.51M

3. Ray (I) (2004)

PG-13 | 152 min | Biography, Drama, Music

73 Metascore

The story of the life and career of the legendary rhythm and blues musician Ray Charles, from his humble beginnings in the South, where he went blind at age seven, to his meteoric rise to stardom during the 1950s and 1960s.

Director: Taylor Hackford | Stars: Jamie Foxx, Regina King, Kerry Washington, Clifton Powell

Votes: 131,879 | Gross: $75.33M

4. Dreamgirls (2006)

PG-13 | 130 min | Drama, Music, Musical

76 Metascore

A trio of black female soul singers cross over to the pop charts in the early 1960s, facing their own personal struggles along the way.

Director: Bill Condon | Stars: Beyoncé, Jamie Foxx, Eddie Murphy, Danny Glover

Votes: 66,088 | Gross: $103.37M

5. Cadillac Records (2008)

R | 109 min | Biography, Drama, Music

65 Metascore

Chronicles the rise of Chess Records and its recording artists.

Director: Darnell Martin | Stars: Adrien Brody, Jeffrey Wright, Beyoncé, Columbus Short

Votes: 18,921 | Gross: $8.20M

6. Ali (2001)

R | 157 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

65 Metascore

A biography of sports legend Muhammad Ali, focusing on his triumphs and controversies between 1964 and 1974.

Director: Michael Mann | Stars: Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, Jon Voight, Mario Van Peebles

Votes: 89,891 | Gross: $58.20M

7. 42 (2013)

PG-13 | 128 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

62 Metascore

In 1947, Jackie Robinson becomes the first African-American to play in Major League Baseball in the modern era when he was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers and faces considerable racism in the process.

Director: Brian Helgeland | Stars: Chadwick Boseman, T.R. Knight, Harrison Ford, Nicole Beharie

Votes: 80,035 | Gross: $95.00M

8. The Rosa Parks Story (2002 TV Movie)

97 min | Biography, Drama

A seamstress recalls events leading to her act of peaceful defiance that prompted the 1955 bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama.

Director: Julie Dash | Stars: Angela Bassett, Peter Francis James, Tonea Stewart, Von Coulter

Votes: 702

9. Winnie Mandela (2011)

R | 104 min | Biography, Drama, History

37 Metascore

A drama that chronicles the life of Winnie Mandela from her childhood through her marriage and her husband's incarceration.

Director: Darrell Roodt | Stars: Jennifer Hudson, Terrence Howard, Elias Koteas, Wendy Crewson

Votes: 714

10. Why Do Fools Fall in Love (1998)

R | 116 min | Biography, Drama, Music

Three women each claim to be the widow of 1950s doo-wop singer Frankie Lymon, claiming legal rights to his estate.

Director: Gregory Nava | Stars: Halle Berry, Vivica A. Fox, Lela Rochon, Larenz Tate

Votes: 3,505 | Gross: $12.41M

11. Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013)

PG-13 | 141 min | Biography, Drama, History

60 Metascore

A chronicle of Nelson Mandela's life journey from his childhood in a rural village through to his inauguration as the first democratically elected president of South Africa.

Director: Justin Chadwick | Stars: Idris Elba, Naomie Harris, Terry Pheto, Robert Hobbs

Votes: 25,607 | Gross: $8.32M

12. Notorious (2009)

R | 122 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

60 Metascore

The life and death story of The Notorious B.I.G. (a.k.a. Christopher Wallace), who came straight out of Brooklyn to take the world of rap music by storm.

Director: George Tillman Jr. | Stars: Jamal Woolard, Anthony Mackie, Derek Luke, Momo Dione

Votes: 39,348 | Gross: $36.84M

13. Introducing Dorothy Dandridge (1999 TV Movie)

R | 120 min | Biography, Drama, Music

This biography of Dorothy Dandridge follows her career through early days on the club circuit with her sister to her turn in movies, including becoming the first black actress to win a Best... See full summary »

Director: Martha Coolidge | Stars: Halle Berry, Brent Spiner, Klaus Maria Brandauer, Obba Babatundé

Votes: 3,109

14. The Josephine Baker Story (1991 TV Movie)

R | 130 min | Biography, Drama, History

Born poor in St. Louis, Missouri, Josephine Baker achieved fame and fortune through her sizzlingly exotic, erotic performances. Starting life on the American Vaudeville circuit, success ... See full summary »

Director: Brian Gibson | Stars: Lynn Whitfield, Rubén Blades, David Dukes, Louis Gossett Jr.

Votes: 1,167

15. Basquiat (1996)

R | 107 min | Biography, Drama

65 Metascore

The brief life of Jean Michel Basquiat, a world renowned New York street artist struggling with fame, drugs and his identity.

Director: Julian Schnabel | Stars: Jeffrey Wright, Michael Wincott, Benicio Del Toro, Claire Forlani

Votes: 18,720 | Gross: $2.96M

16. Lady Sings the Blues (1972)

R | 144 min | Biography, Drama, Music

The story of the troubled life and career of the legendary Jazz singer, Billie Holiday.

Director: Sidney J. Furie | Stars: Diana Ross, Billy Dee Williams, Richard Pryor, James T. Callahan

Votes: 3,487

17. The Jacksons: An American Dream (1992)

240 min | Biography, Drama, Music

The Jacksons are your average working-class family in Gary, Indiana; but when their father discovers the kids have an extraordinary musical talent they form a band. Winning talent show ... See full summary »

Stars: Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Angela Bassett, Holly Robinson Peete, Margaret Avery

Votes: 2,976

18. The Hurricane (1999)

R | 146 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

74 Metascore

The story of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter, a boxer wrongly imprisoned for murder, and the people who aided in his fight to prove his innocence.

Director: Norman Jewison | Stars: Denzel Washington, Vicellous Shannon, Deborah Kara Unger, Liev Schreiber

Votes: 88,236 | Gross: $50.67M

19. Antwone Fisher (2002)

PG-13 | 120 min | Biography, Drama

62 Metascore

Antwone Fisher, a young navy man, is forced to see a psychiatrist after a violent outburst against a fellow crewman. During the course of treatment a painful past is revealed and a new hope begins.

Director: Denzel Washington | Stars: Denzel Washington, Derek Luke, Joy Bryant, Malcolm David Kelley

Votes: 31,457 | Gross: $21.08M

20. Little Richard (2000 TV Movie)

TV-14 | 120 min | Biography, Drama, Music

The story of Little Richard Penniman, from his poor Southern upbringing to dealing with the trials and tribulations of being a black singer in the 1950s, to his born-again phase and brief "retirement" from rock and roll.

Director: Robert Townsend | Stars: Leon, Jenifer Lewis, Carl Lumbly, Tamala Jones

Votes: 674

21. Talk to Me (2007)

R | 118 min | Biography, Drama, History

69 Metascore

The story of Washington D.C. radio personality Ralph "Petey" Greene, an ex-con who became a popular talk show host and community activist in the 1960s.

Director: Kasi Lemmons | Stars: Don Cheadle, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Bruce McFee, Mike Epps

Votes: 9,196 | Gross: $4.47M

22. The Temptations (1998)

150 min | Biography, Drama, Music

Biography of the singers who formed the hit Motown musical act, The Temptations.

Stars: Charles Malik Whitfield, D.B. Woodside, Terron Brooks, Christian Payton

Votes: 3,786

23. What's Love Got to Do with It (1993)

R | 118 min | Biography, Drama, Music

The story of singer Tina Turner's rise to stardom and how she gained the courage to break free from her abusive husband, Ike Turner.

Director: Brian Gibson | Stars: Angela Bassett, Laurence Fishburne, RaéVen Kelly, Virginia Capers

Votes: 16,162 | Gross: $39.10M

24. Jimi: All Is by My Side (2013)

R | 118 min | Biography, Drama, Music

66 Metascore

A drama based on Jimi Hendrix's life as he left New York City for London, where his career took off.

Director: John Ridley | Stars: André Benjamin, Hayley Atwell, Imogen Poots, Ruth Negga

Votes: 5,961 | Gross: $0.32M

25. The Express (2008)

PG | 130 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

58 Metascore

A drama based on the life of college football hero Ernie Davis, the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy.

Director: Gary Fleder | Stars: Rob Brown, Dennis Quaid, Clancy Brown, Darrin Dewitt Henson

Votes: 19,111 | Gross: $9.59M

26. Wu-Tang: An American Saga (2019– )

TV-MA | 49 min | Biography, Drama

The show tracks the Wu Tang Clan's formation, a vision of Bobby Diggs, who strives to unite a dozen young, black men that are torn between music and crime but eventually rise to become the unlikeliest of American success stories.

Stars: Tamiz U. Rezvi, Erika Alexander, T.J. Atoms, Joey Bada$$

Votes: 2,416

27. Harriet (I) (2019)

PG-13 | 125 min | Action, Biography, Drama

66 Metascore

The extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman's escape from slavery and transformation into one of America's greatest heroes, whose courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history.

Director: Kasi Lemmons | Stars: Cynthia Erivo, Leslie Odom Jr., Joe Alwyn, Clarke Peters

Votes: 10,537

28. The Bobby DeBarge Story (2019 TV Movie)

Biography, Drama, Music

The movie explores the tumultuous life of Bobby DeBarge, the former lead singer of 70's R&B/Funk Band Switch, also the eldest sibling of the world-famous pop group DeBarge. Despite his ... See full summary »

Director: Russ Parr | Stars: Romeo Ballantine, Big Boi, Matt Borlenghi, Maiya Boyd

Votes: 90

29. Richard Pryor: Omit the Logic (2013)

R | 83 min | Documentary, Biography

The life and times of Richard Pryor.

Director: Marina Zenovich | Stars: David Banks, Rona Barrett, David Brinkley, Skip Brittenham

Votes: 1,340

30. I Am Richard Pryor (2019)

Not Rated | 92 min | Documentary, Biography

I Am Richard Pryor tells the story of the legendary performer and iconic social satirist, who transcended race and social barriers by delivering his honest irreverent and biting humor to ... See full summary »

Director: Jesse James Miller | Stars: Sandra Bernhard, Todd Boyd, Ron De Blasio, Mike Epps

Votes: 174

31. Quincy (2018)

TV-MA | 124 min | Documentary, Biography

60 Metascore

An intimate look into the life of icon Quincy Jones. A unique force in music and popular culture for 70 years, Jones has transcended racial and cultural boundaries; his story is inextricably woven into the fabric of America.

Directors: Alan Hicks, Rashida Jones | Stars: Quincy Jones, Rashida Jones, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Clarence Avant

Votes: 2,754

32. Hope & Redemption: The Lena Baker Story (2008)

PG-13 | 106 min | Crime, Drama, History

A chronicle of the life of Lena Baker, the first woman to be sent to the electric chair in Georgia for the murder of her employer, who forced her into sexual slavery.

Director: Ralph Wilcox | Stars: Tichina Arnold, Beverly Todd, Peter Coyote, Michael Rooker

Votes: 342



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