Steve James

Hoop Dreams

Hoop Dreams

Two ordinary inner-city Chicago kids dare to reach for the impossible—professional basketball glory—in this epic chronicle of hope and faith. Filmed over a five-year period, Hoop Dreams, by Steve James, Frederick Marx, and Peter Gilbert, follows young Arthur Agee and William Gates and their families as the boys navigate the complex, competitive world of scholastic athletics while dealing with the intense pressures of their home lives and neighborhoods. This revelatory film continues to educate and inspire viewers, and it is widely considered one of the great works of American nonfiction cinema.

Film Info

  • Steve James
  • United States
  • 1994
  • 172 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.33:1
  • English
  • Spine #289

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital restoration, created through a collaboration between the Academy Film Archive, the Sundance Film Institute, and the UCLA Film & Television Archive, with 4.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Two audio commentaries: one with filmmakers Steve James, Frederick Marx, and Peter Gilbert, and one with the film’s subjects, Arthur Agee and William Gates
  • Life After “Hoop Dreams,” a new documentary that catches up with Agee, Gates, and their families
  • Additional scenes
  • Collection of excerpts from Siskel & Ebert tracking the acclaim for Hoop Dreams
  • Original 1994 music video for the film’s theme song
  • Trailers
  • PLUS: Essays by author John Edgar Wideman and filmmaker and critic Robert Greene

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital restoration, created through a collaboration between the Academy Film Archive, the Sundance Film Institute, and the UCLA Film & Television Archive, with 4.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Two audio commentaries: one with filmmakers Steve James, Frederick Marx, and Peter Gilbert, and one with the film’s subjects, Arthur Agee and William Gates
  • Life After “Hoop Dreams,” a new documentary that catches up with Agee, Gates, and their families
  • Additional scenes
  • Collection of excerpts from Siskel & Ebert tracking the acclaim for Hoop Dreams
  • Original 1994 music video for the film’s theme song
  • Trailers
  • PLUS: Essays by author John Edgar Wideman and filmmaker and critic Robert Greene
Hoop Dreams
Cast
William Gates
Emma Gates
William’s mother
Curtis Gates
William’s brother
Arthur “Man” Agee Jr.
Arthur “Bo” Agee Sr.
Arthur’s father
Sheila Agee
Arthur’s mother
Joe “Sweetie” Agee
Arthur’s brother
Tomika “Tony” Agee
Arthur’s sister
Earl Smith
Independent talent scout
Gene Pingatore
St. Joseph High School head basketball coach
Isiah Thomas
Detroit Pistons basketball player
Sister Marilyn Hopewell
St. Joseph High School guidance counselor
Patricia Wier
President, Encyclopedia Britannica
Marjorie Heard
Marshall High School guidance counselor
Luther Bedford
Marshall High School head basketball coach
Aretha Mitchell
Marshall High School guidance counselor
Jazz Agee
Tomika’s daughter, Arthur’s niece
Shannon Johnson
Arthur’s friend
Catherine Mines
William’s girlfriend
Alicia Mines
William’s daughter
Alvin Bibbs
William’s brother-in-law
Willie Gates
William’s father
James Kelly
Marshall High School teacher
Michael O’Brien
St. Joseph High School director of finance
Dick Vitale
TV sports commentator
Kevin O’Neill
Marquette University head basketball coach
Bobby Knight
Indiana University head basketball coach
Joey Meyer
DePaul University head basketball coach
Frank DuBois
Nike ABCD Camp academic director
Spike Lee
Film director
Bo Ellis
Marquette University assistant basketball coach
Bob Gibbons
Independent talent scout
Dennis Doyle
St. Joseph High School assistant basketball coach
Clarence Webb
Marshall High School science teacher
Stan Wilson
Independent talent scout
Derrick Zinneman
Marshall High School basketball player
Tim Gray
Mineral Area Junior College basketball coach
Credits
Producers
Frederick Marx
Producers
Steve James
Producers
Peter Gilbert
Director
Steve James
Director of photography
Peter Gilbert
Editors
Frederick Marx
Editors
Steve James
Editors
William Haugse
Coproducer
Gordon Quinn
Sound
Adam Singer
Sound
Tom Yore
Music producer
Ben Sidran
Executive producers
Gordon Quinn
Executive producers
Catherine Allan
Postproduction supervisor
Susanne Suffredin
Executive in charge for KTCA
Gerry Richman
KTCA production manager
Emily Stevens
Additional music
Tom Yore
Additional photography
Gordon Quinn
Additional photography
Ed Scott
Additional photography
Sid Lubitsch
Additional photography
Kevin McCarey
Additional photography
Mirko Popadic
Additional photography
Jim Morrissette
Additional photography
Jim Fetterley
Additional sound
Ed Scott
Additional sound
Mirko Popadic
Additional sound
Bill Jenkins
Narrator
Steve James
Technical consultant
Jim Morrissette
Kartemquin online editors
Frederick Marx
Kartemquin online editors
Melissa Sterne
Colorists
Craig Leffel
Colorists
Robert Jung
Colorists
Oscar Oboza Jr.
Postproduction coordinator
Fenell Doremus
Audio mix
Ric Coken
Audio mix
Chuck Rapp
Audio mix
Corey Coken
Audio mix
Bryen Hensley
Audio mix
Margaret M. S. Marvin/Zenith Audio Services
Assistant editors
Fenell Doremus
Assistant editors
Linda Balek
Assistant editors
Sarah Galloway
Assistant editors
Lisa Hubbard
Assistant editors
Jim Fetterley
Assistant editors
Neil Laird
Assistant editors
Lou Anastas
Title design
George Eastman
Title design
Betsy Fil
Research
Laura Hoffman
Research
Bill Siegel

From The Current

Jessica Morgan’s Top 10

Jessica Morgan is one of the co-creators of the popular celebrity fashion blog Go Fug Yourself.


Feb 1, 2018
Christopher Radcliff and Lauren Wolkstein’s Top 10

Christopher Radcliff and Lauren Wolkstein are New York City–based filmmakers.


Sep 7, 2017
Dustin Guy Defa’s Top 10

Dustin Guy Defa’s second feature, Person to Person, is now playing in theaters.


Aug 2, 2017
Steve Gunn’s Top 10

Steve Gunn is regarded as one of the finest guitar players of our era. Eyes on the Lines, released last year on Matador Records, is his fourth full-length album.


May 11, 2017
Steve James on Kartemquin Films and the Art of Documentary
Steve James on Kartemquin Films and the Art of Documentary

In honor of the semicentennial anniversary of Kartemquin Films, the influential documentarian discusses his groundbreaking, Kartemquin-produced 1994 film Hoop Dreams, what his work with the company has meant for him, and how Kartemquin has grown ove

By Hillary Weston

On Film / Interviews — Jun 22, 2016
Fifty Essential Documentary Films
Fifty Essential Documentary Films

Today, we’re celebrating the release on Blu-ray and DVD of Les Blank’s legendary Leon Russell music documentary A Poem Is a Naked Person. And while we’re on the topic of fascinating nonfiction filmmaking, we’re also taking a look at a new lis…

On Film / Short Takes
Mar 29, 2016
Josh and Benny Safdie’s Top 10

The New York–born–and–raised directors Josh and Benny Safdie’s films have earned them awards from around the world.


May 29, 2015
Life After Hoop Dreams
Life After Hoop Dreams

In 2004 and 2005, the makers of Hoop Dreams, in collaboration with Criterion, revisited the documentary’s principle figures, Arthur Agee and William Gates, along with their families, to see what had been happening in their lives since the film’s …

Inside Criterion / Sneak Peeks — Apr 6, 2015
Daniel Lopatin’s Top 10

Daniel Lopatin, a.k.a. Oneohtrix Point Never, is a Brooklyn-based experimental musician. His fifth album, R Plus Seven, is now available from Warp Records.


Oct 4, 2013
Chuck Klosterman’s Top 10

Chuck Klosterman is the author of seven books (most recently, The Visible Man and Eating the Dinosaur) and serves as an accidental narrator of the LCD Soundsystem documentary Shut Up and Play the Hits.


May 16, 2012
Repertory Pick: Meet Steve James in St. Louis
Repertory Pick: Meet Steve James in St. Louis

In 1994, Hoop Dreams announced an important new voice in documentary filmmaking: Steve James. Since that epic chronicle of two inner-city Chicago teens’ crusades to become professional basketball players—one of the most acclaimed and successful …


Apr 26, 2012
Dominic Monaghan’s Top 10

The English actor Dominic Monaghan is best known for his roles as Meriadoc Brandybuck in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy and Charlie Pace on the series Lost.


Dec 13, 2011
Real Art

A whole bunch of questions arose when the critics at Time Out New York were compiling their new list of the fifty greatest documentaries of all time. As they explain in their introduction to the special online slide show, such subjective mysteries as…


Nov 19, 2010
Keeping the Dream Alive

Arthur Agee, the basketball hopeful whose rise to NBA prominence was chronicled in the thrilling 1994 documentary Hoop Dreams, is beginning a “Hoop Dreams tour” across the United States. Along with the basketball marketing company Hoop Connection…


Jul 29, 2010
Joe Swanberg’s Top 10

Joe Swanberg is the writer and director of the independent American films Kissing on the Mouth, LOL, Hannah Takes the Stairs, Nights and Weekends, and Alexander the Last.


Jun 9, 2009
Matt Dentler’s Top 10

Matt Dentler is the producer of the South by Southwest Film Conference & Festival, in Austin, Texas (sxsw.com), as well as a curator for American distributor Film Movement and Canadian distributor Films We Like. He also hosts the weekly local PBS ser


Nov 20, 2008
Hoop Dreams: Serious Game

The familiarity and sadness of certain scenes (William Gates missing a crucial foul shot, Arthur Agee’s parents paying a humiliating visit to St. Joseph’s, a suburban Chicago prep school, where they must bow and scrape and beg for a transcript of…

By John Edgar Wideman


May 10, 2005