Lee Daniels' PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL 'PUSH' BY SAPPHIRE is a vibrant, honest and resoundingly hopeful film about the human capacity to grow and overcome. Set in Harlem in 1987, it is the story of Claireece 'Precious' Jones (Gabourey Sidibe), a sixteen-year-old African-American girl born into a life no one would want. She's pregnant for the second time by her absent father; at home, she must wait hand and foot on her mother (Mo'Nique), a poisonously angry woman who abuses her emotionally and physically. School is a place of chaos, and Precious has reached the ninth grade with good marks and an awful secret: she can neither read nor write. Precious may sometimes be down, but she is never out. Beneath her impassive expression is a watchful, curious young woman with an inchoate but unshakeable sense that other possibilities exist for her. Threatened with expulsion, Precious is offered the chance to transfer to an alternative school, Each One/Teach One. Precious doesn't know the meaning of 'alternative,' but her instincts tell her this is the chance she has been waiting for. In the literacy workshop taught by the patient yet firm Ms. Rain (Paula Patton), Precious begins a journey that will lead her from darkness, pain and powerlessness to light, love and self-determination.
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Cast & Crew
Mo'NiqueActorMo'Nique received a standing ovation when she stepped on stage for the first time in her hometown of Baltimore, Maryland, giving her confidence to pursue a career as a stand-up comedian. After numerous stand-up performances, she took a leap forward with one of the starring roles in The Parkers (1999). Mo'Nique's huge international breakthrough came with her performance in the independent feature film Precious (2009), for which she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and over 30 other major awards for best acting including the most important ones like the Golden Globe, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award, the New York Film Critics Circle Award, the Chicago Film Critics Association Award, the Independent Spirit Award, the Screen Actors Guild Award, the National Society of Film Critics Award, the BAFTA Film Award and Sundance Film Festival's Special Jury Prize.More
Paula PattonActorPaula Patton was born in Los Angeles, California, to Joyce (Vanraden) and Charles Patton. Her father is African-American and her mother, who is caucasian, has German, English, and Dutch ancestry. Her family lived across the street from the 20th Century Fox lot when she was growing up and she was a fan of films from her earliest years. Her mother, who also appreciated good films, was a schoolteacher, and her father was a lawyer. Paula claims that as a girl she would escape by "pretending to be someone else" so it was not a surprise that she acted in high school plays at Hamilton Magnet Arts High School. Her favorite role was that of "Abigail" in "The Crucible". However, she went on to study film at the University of Southern California in a summer program, and won a 3-month assignment making documentaries for PBS. This led to her working as a production assistant for TV documentaries, and also for Howie Mandel's talk show. She progressed to actually producing documentary segments for Medical Diaries (2000) airing on Discovery Health Channel. Paula now professes that she liked what she was doing, but her dream remained the same as when she was small so she took acting lessons and shifted gears to become a performer. She was almost immediately successful and, within three years, had played parts in major features, Hitch (2005) and Idlewild (2006) and the female lead in Deja Vu (2006) opposite Denzel Washington.More
GABOUREY SIDIBEActorGabourey "Gabby" Sidibe, the star of Precious (2009), was born in the Bedford-Stuyvesant community in Brooklyn, New York. Her mother, Alice Tan Ridley, is a former special education teacher who gave up her career and became a street performer/singer, while her father, Ibnou Sidibe, is a cab driver. Her mother is African-American and her father is Senegalese. Her parents split when she was a youngster and Gabby grew up in Harlem. Though she was cast in school plays as a child, Sidibe had no interest in acting. She had witnessed her mother's financial struggles as a street singer and wanted the security that an education and a desk job would give her. After attending local colleges, Gabby pursued a degree in psychology at Mercy College. She was in the middle of preparing for an exam when a friend phoned her about an audition for the newest effort from Lee Daniels, Precious (2009). Instead of attending class, she ended up being cast in the title role as Claireece "Precious" Jones, a taciturn, sixteen year-old who is pregnant for the second time after being raped by her father and is also on the receiving end of constant physical abuse by her mother. As grim as the subject matter is, Precious (2009) has become critical success and a source of inspiration for many. While her co-stars, Mo'Nique and Mariah Carey have both received a great deal of critical attention, it is Gabby who is the revelation as Precious, a character whose personality is quite different from her own. Anyone expecting a damaged young woman with no self-esteem is in for a shock after meeting the charming Sidibe. She hopes that her success in the film will motivate others to chase their dreams. Precious (2009) has opened other doors for Sidibe. She has also completed shooting Yelling to the Sky (2011), a project from the Sundance Lab that also stars Zoë Kravitz and has other projects in the works.More