Malcolm D. Lee Dishes on The Best Man Holiday
It’s the movie we all know and love … and now you can watch The Best Man Holiday from the comfort of your own home just in time for Valentine’s Day!
The film, available Tuesday on DVD and Blu-ray, features tons of extra goodies–including an alternate ending, deleted/extended scenes, a gag reel and much more!
Malcolm D. Lee, the man behind the successful Best Man franchise, gives JET the inside scoop on bonus scenes from The Best Man Holiday and a glimpse into what he has in store for the third installment of the series.
JET: The DVD is loaded with extras, including an alternate ending to the one seen in theaters. Can you tell us a little more about that?
Malcolm D. Lee: The original ending is the alternate ending. It will be a nice surprise. Some people will be kind of confused by it. But once they watch it, they’ll see how that fits in. That’s how it was originally supposed to be. There are also a lot deleted scenes. There’s a great one between Nia Long and Sanaa Lathan, a reconciliation scene. There are scenes from the trailer that didn’t make the movie and there are small documentaries about how the movie came to be and behind-the-scenes of the choreography of the dance.
JET: Were you surprised at all by the box office success of the movie?
MDL: You can certainly never tell. I had a good feeling about it … I knew it had a chance. I knew that people who had seen the movie really loved the movie. I thought the marketing team did a good job getting the word out and making it feel like an event you had to see. I knew we had a really good shot, so it was really gratifying to see the response, especially on opening weekend.
JET: Likewise, were you surprised by the stereotypes surrounding the release?
MDL: A lot of people in mainstream media were very dismissive of The Best Man Holiday. They didn’t think it could possibly compete for the top box office position. There were a lot of stories prior to the film coming out of people asking why the studio was putting our movie out on that date. Why didn’t they move up the other movies like Wolf on Wall Street? All that’s there is a sequel to a race-themed movie…I don’t know what’s urban about a movie where 70 percent of it takes place in a New York mansion.
JET: What is your response to people who called The Best Man Holiday a race-themed movie?
MDL: I’m tired of people calling them Black movies … there’s something for everyone. It’s not a sub-genre. It’s a drama, a comedy. We don’t have to make it separate and apart. It’s clear what the movie is about and who’s in it. Unless we’re going to call Wolf of Wall Street a White movie, let’s not call The Best Man Holiday a Black movie or an urban movie.
JET: Why do you think fans are so loyal to the franchise?
MDL: What I’ve heard overall from people who stop me in the street is they say “this represents us.” That was my goal in making the first movie. I wasn’t seeing myself represented on screen in an accurate way … someone who went to college, was upwardly mobile and rooted in their race/Blackness in a way where they weren’t necessarily wearing it on their sleeve. The amazing cast we were able to bring together and their chemistry made the movie feel special the first time out and now we’re reuniting them in a Christmas setting with the promise that there would be more of the same … The African American experience is the American experience. It’s universal. This movie had a nice balance of drama and comedy. People were invested in the characters way they didn’t expect. It was an emotional experience.
JET: Have you started working on a third movie and what can you tell us about it?
MDL: I’ve started to write it, but it’s nowhere near production. It won’t take another 14 years … it will be ready much quicker this time around. It’s all about putting the right script together. That is the main and only goal right now. The third movie will feature a destination wedding and there will be some surprises.
Click HERE to find out how you can win a copy of The Best Man Holiday Blu-ray combo pack!