In 1984, 17-year-old Ben Wilson was a symbol of everything promising about Chicago: a sweet-natured youngster from the city's fabled South Side, and America's top high school basketball prospect. Nicknamed "Magic Johnson with a jump shot," Wilson's natural talents and drive assured his best years were yet to come. Then, in November of his senior year, the career of this exceptional youngster was abruptly and tragically cut short. Ben's grim fate sent ripples of horror through the city and the country.
Best known for their visionary music videos for such superstars as Kanye West and Mos Def, filmmakers Coodie and Chike bring viceral sophistication to a narrative that feels as raw today as it did 28 years ago. Told through awe-inspiring footage of his high school glory days along with candid interviews with teammates, coaches, family, and friends, Benji is a stirring portrait of a phenom admired both on the court and off.
Special Note Collapse
Talent scheduled to appear (subject to change): Prince Amukamara, Martellus Bennett, Ahmad Bradshaw, David Tyree, Pras, LaShawn Merritt, Damon Dash, Vashtie, Common, Mos Def, Lamar Odom, Rob Kardashian, Wood Harris, Steve Jackson
Update 3.23: Please note that one screening time has changed.
Note: Festival badges will not grant admission to this special event.
This film is appropriate for teenagers and up.
About the Director(s)Collapse
Coodie and Chike first collaborated on the music video for Kanye West's "Through the Wire." They have worked with such music luminaries as Erykah Badu, Christina Aguilera, Gil Scott-Heron, and John Legend. They also formed Creative Control, a production and talent development company, and host creativecontrol.tv, an online video channel that develops original hip-hop content.