Akeelah and the Bee (Widescreen Edition) (DVD)

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Akeelah and the Bee (Widescreen Edition) (DVD)





Laurence Fishburne



Age Group


Rating MPA


Recording Studio






Amazon ASIN











1h 52min


Awards, 11 wins & 15 nominations


Doug Atchison


Doug Atchison


Angela Bassett, Laurence Fishburne, Keke Palmer

Produced by

Jaki Brown, Michael Burns, Marc Butan, Mark Cuban, Laurence Fishburne, Sidney Ganis, Nancy Hult Ganis, Michael Johnson, Kent Kubena, Danny Llewelyn, Tom Ortenberg, Michael Paseornek, Dalia Phillips, Michael Romersa, Helen Sugland, Mike Upton, Todd Wagner

Music by

Aaron Zigman

Cinematography by

M. David Mullen

Film Editing by

Glenn Farr

Casting By

Jaki Brown, Kim Coleman, Aisha Coley

Production Design by

Warren Alan Young

Art Direction by

Shelley A. Wallace

Set Decoration by

Julieann Getman

Costume Design by

Sharen Davis

Makeup Department

Linda Cowan, Fay Kelly, Erma Kent, Edna Sheen, Kenneth Walker, Gigi Williams

Production Management

Jennifer Booth, Joseph P. Genier, Rosemary Lara, Lisa Looney, Curtis A. Miller, Carl Pedregal, Donna Sloan, Mike Upton

Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

Anne Carroll, Rodney Allen Hooks, David K. Riebel, Chad Rosen, Marvin Williams, Ken Twohy

Art Department

Alysia Allen, Roxanne Brooks, Nelson Bush, Richard Day, Matthew D. Egan, Bianca Ferro, Mark Finer, Chela Fiorini, Matt Furginson, Crill Hansen, Lonnie Hansen, Jason Dock Harrell, Kathleen Kasinger, Shan Kelly, Charles Kern, Leslie Lawson, Lawrence D. Lira, Alicia Maccarone, Jocelyn Marsh, Robert Cass McEntee, Douglas McKay, Kristie Moore, Efren N. Perez, Ken Peterson, Buddy Ray Reynolds, Oswaldo Rojas, Michael Ryan, Jose Saenz, Greg Sanger, Grant Sawyer, Angela Simpson, Marquis Smith, Sherman Toy, Sal Valle, Abraham Vorster, John Warner

Sound Department

Nancy Barker, Lance Brown, Ezra Dweck, Greg Hedgepath, Matt Hedges, Melissa Kennelly, Shawn Kennelly, Laura Macias, Barbara McCart, James Morioka, Chris Navarro, Vince Nicastro, Matthew Nicolay, Ken S. Polk, Fred Stafford, Roland N. Thai, Eric Thompson, Gerard Vernice, Stacey A. Washer, James Wright, Julie Altus, Dean St. John

Visual Effects by

Shelly Dutcher, Mark Intravartolo, Karen McCarthy, Andrew Midgley, Pat Repola, John Scheer, Mike Uguccioni

Camera and Electrical Department

Eric S. Adamson, Saeed Adyani, James Keeper Auld, Joseph M. Barno, Denise Brady, Brian Christie, Jeffrey R. Clark, Cooper Donaldson, Manny Duran, Keith Eisberg, Jordan Garretson, Dash Hart, Timothy Hedgecock, Brad Heiner, Tommy Hubbard, Joshua Lee Huber, Stephen James, John Leonetti, Marcos O Lopez, Matthew Minke, Chris Mosio, David Mun, Robert Murphy, Bob Myers, Jarrod Oswald, Rich Paisley, Noah Peter, Theo Pingarelli, Johnny Radzik, Alexander Salazar, Steven Douglas Smith, Deron Tse, Steve Whitcomb, William Rick Young, Mark Carlile, Michael Fitzgerald, Andrew Korner, Dave Muskeni, Jeff Niggemeyer, Johnny Radzik

Casting Department

Benita Elliott, Barbara Harris, Robyn M. Mitchell, Cash Oshman, Eve Streger, Lamese Williams, Heather Sirota

Costume and Wardrobe Department

Yvonne Bastidos, Cheryl Cravedi, Meta Moise, Riki Lin Sabusawa, Jodie Stern, Robin West

Editorial Department

Jenny Cho, Mark Czyzewski, Sue Gates, Mark W. McCoy, Josh Moore, David Orr, Janice Papadaki, Martha Savelio, Bob Wenokur

Location Management

Richard DiPatri, Andrew C. Keeter, Craig Simmons

Music Department

Johnny Caruso, Mollie B. Casey, Jay Faires, Jeanne Fay, Joel C. High, Tricia Holloway, Kevin Koloff, Mateo Laboriel, Ernest Lee, Thomas D. Mahoney, Evelyn Paglinawan, Eduardo Ponsdomenech, Rebecca Rienks, Michael Stern, Jesse Voccia, John Winters, Sam Zeines, Aaron Zigman, Howard Drossin, Josh Evans, Steve Juliani, Kory Kruckenberg, Sean Osborn, Satnam Ramgotra, David Sabee

Script and Continuity Department

Jan McWilliams

Transportation Department

Tony Barattini, Rod Brodie, Joe Cosentino, Angel de Santi, Audrey Fitzgerald, Wayne Flowers Jr., William Gardner, Nathan Hardcastle, Geno Hart, Kirk Huston, Leo Landa, Steve Larson, Luis Mata, Esteban Munoz, John Pellegrino, Adam Pinkstaff, Joseph R. Rose, Brian Stackhouse, Steven Luke Weible, Herbert David Wilson, Chris Haynes

Additional Crew

Axel Alba, Mary Jane Amato, Leland Jay Anderson, Shadee Ardalan, James M. Arnold, Bree Bailey, Kimberly Bailey, Jacques Bailly, Andrea Baker, Susan Bannout, Cassandra Barbour, Jim Bartoo, Kendre Berry, P. John Burke, Courtney Taylor Burness, Polly Businger, Jules Carideo, Lanei Chapman, Bryant Cheng, Jason Cox, Kevin Davidson, Jenny DeArmitt, Yon Elvira, Carlo Eugster, Heather Fielding, Jeff Fischer, Amanda Shamis Flannery, Elan Garfias, Cynthia Gates Fujikawa, Lisa Gooding, Maya Goodwin, Pamela B. Green, Sarah Greenberg, Elaine Hall, Terrence Hardy, Liam Hearne, Gary Hebert, Dorottya Hegedus, Kayla Henry, Diana Horwich, Josh Holden Hume, Paige Hurd, Tracy Jackson, Krysten Leigh Jones, Audrey Kendrick, Carlyle King, Brian M. Kingman, Cody Klop, Katelyn Kowalick, Robyn Kubena, Carlos Lacamara, John Lafayette, Jeff L. Lieberman, Jose Lopez, Nery Arnold Lopez, Daniel MacArthur, Danielle Mana, Christopher Marlon, Austin Marques, Terence Mathews, Douglas McClure, Todd McCormick, Meredith McIvor, Robert M. Melnik, Kenneth Miller, Khanya Mkhize, Kevin Moll, Keri Moorhouse, Nathan D. Morrissey, Michaela Jill Murphy, Robert Natter, Lisa Ng, A.J. Noel, Tim Palen, Jansen Panettiere, Kevin Picket, Keith C. Pickett, Thomas Pistor, Julie Polkes, Michelle Pullman, Timothy Scott Ralston, Mishon Ratliff, Emily Rice, Lyman Richardson, Ashlynn Rose, James Ross, Amber Roy, Jonathan Ruiz, John Sacchi, Jeff Saville, Samar Sepehri, Laura Sevier, Zack Shada, Jo Ann Smith, Michael S. Strange, Shane Sweet, Tinashe, Jarik Van Sluijs, Charlyn Ware, Robert Weisman, Denzel Whitaker, Austin Williams, Donald E. Wygal, Cory Cate, Julie Cummings, Dante, Mike Kohl, Sean Kevin Sweeney, Paul Wilson-Young


Amy Atchison, Michael Behrens, Eric J. Danenberg, Montana Fishburne, Garth Friedrich, Alex Graves, Djibril N Doye, Mary N Doye, Bayo Ogumdele, Lou Pitt, Carla M. Roberts, Greg Tennant, Alvin Williams, Marianne Williamson, Richard Yarborough


Drama, Family


Out of the Blue... Entertainment, Reactor Films, Cinema Gypsy Productions









ImDb Rating Votes


Metacritic Rating


Short Description

Akeelah and the Bee is a 2006 American drama film written and directed by Doug Atchison. It tells the story of Akeelah Anderson (Keke Palmer), an 11-year-old girl who participates in the Scripps National Spelling Bee, her mother (Angela Bassett), her schoolmates, and her coach, Dr. Joshua Larabee (Laurence Fishburne). The cast also features Curtis Armstrong, J.R. Villarreal, Sean Michael Afable, Erica Hubbard, Lee Thompson Young, Julito McCullum, Sahara Garey, Eddie Steeples, and Tzi Ma.

The film was developed over a period of 10 years by Atchison, who came up with the initial concept after seeing the 1994 Scripps National Spelling Bee and noting that a majority of the competitors came from well-off socioeconomic backgrounds. After completing the script in 1999, Atchison won one of the Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting in 2000, which attracted producers Sid Ganis and Nancy Hult Ganis. After an initial inability to secure funding, the project got a second wind as a result of the success of the 2002 documentary film Spellbound. Lionsgate Films undertook the production in 2004 and in the following year it was filmed in South Los Angeles on a budget of over $6 million.

Atchison remarked that his theme for the film, deemed an inspirational film, was about overcoming obstacles despite difficult challenges along the way. He also said that he wanted to portray African Americans in a manner that was not stereotypical and tried to show how African-American children incorporate some stereotypes. The film alludes to the importance of community as well as to problems black communities face. It also deals with esteem and stigma in school while criticizing the public school system. Cast members said that although the film was aimed at children, they considered it had important lessons for the parents as well.

Released in the United States on April 28, 2006, Akeelah and the Bee was positively received by critics and audiences. Reviewers praised its storyline and cast, lauding Palmer s performance, although a few critics panned the story as familiar and formulaic, and were critical of the portrayal of Asian-American characters. The film grossed $19 million, and received a number of awards and nominations, including the Black Reel Awards and the NAACP Image Awards. Film critics highly praised it for avoiding African-American stereotypes common in Hollywood films, while scholars were less favorable, even saying it reinforces some clichés.

Box Office Budget

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Box Office Opening Weekend USA


Box Office Gross USA


Box Office Cumulative Worldwide Gross



Spelling,spelling bee,national spelling bee,middle school,african american