The Brothers is a 2001 romantic comedy starring Morris Chestnut, D.L. Hughley, Bill Bellamy, and Shemar Moore. The film was written and directed by Gary Hardwick, who has directed other films and television series such as Deliver Us From Eva and Hangin' With Mr. Cooper. In addition to the starring cast, The Brothers has an additional cast of Gabrielle Union, Tatyana Ali, Jenifer Lewis, Tamala Jones, and Clifton Powell. Dubbed as the male version to Waiting to Exhale by director Gary Hardwick, this film traces the hilarious journey of four African-American men, as they take on love, sex, friendship and two of life's most terrifying prospects: honesty and commitment.
The film touches on comedy, drama, and romance. The film was released in March 2001 and went on to gross almost $30 million at the box office which was considered a great success considering it almost quintupled the cost of the movie's production ($6 million). The movie was nominated for NAACP Image Awards and Black Reel Awards, but did not win any of the nominations.
The film was shot at various locations in California and Florida. The sole filming location in California was Los Angeles. The filming locations in Florida were Orlando and South Beach.
Smart, successful and sexy, Jackson Smith (Chestnut), Brian Palmer (Bellamy), Derrick West (Hughley) and Terry White (Moore) are lifelong friends since childhood, banded together to weather love's innate terrors and occasional triumphs in this brazenly comic yet painfully true exploration of the battle between the sexes. Amidst the career track, basketball and bar hopping, they love women, as many as possible, but shocking revelations test the foursome's friendship and changes their dating and relationship habits forever.
The film has separate subplots with each character while showing how their friendship binds them collectively.
Jackson struggles with commitment issues and often has nightmares of being shot by a bride. When working through his issues with a therapist, she suggests he meet a woman that night and "give his heart to her." He soon meets a beautiful freelance photographer (Union) who makes Jackson realize that he may be capable of true love and commitment. When he finds out that Denise once dated his father, his new outlook on love takes a turn.
Brian an attorney realizes that his chronic womanizing is catching up to him in ways he didn't imagine when a former lover (also the judge in a case he is currently working) sends him to jail. He makes a vow to not date African-American women, as he believes that they carry a lot of unnecessary drama and constant issues. Brian is also working to gain custody of his younger brother who currently lives in a affection-less household with his mother.
Derrick Derrick, the only married member of the group loves his wife (Jones) and daughter, but is struggling with the idea of his wife not giving him the type of sex he desires. After many attempts to talk things out and convince his wife that pleasing your partner is an important part of a successful marriage, he and his wife separate. In addition to wanting more in the bedroom, Derrick is also trying to convince his wife to let his ailing mother live in their home.
Morris Chestnut as Jackson Smith
D.L. Hughley as Derrick West
Bill Bellamy as Brian Palmer
Shemar Moore as Terry White
Gabrielle Union-Wade as Denise Johnson
Tatyana Ali as Cherie Smith
Jenifer Lewis as Louise Smith
Susan Dalian as BeBe Fales
Tamala Jones as Sheila West
Clifton Powell as Fred Smith
Julie Benz as Jesse Caldwell
Vanessa Bell Calloway as Dr. Thelma Woolridge
Angelle Brooks as Judge Carla Williams
Gary Hardwick as T-Boy
Nadege Auguste as Ursula
The film opened second at the North American box office making $10.3 million USD in its opening weekend, behind Heartbreakers which opened at the top spot.NAACP Image Awards
Outstanding Motion Picture, (Nominated)
Black Reel Awards
Theatrical- Best Director, (Nominated) Gary Hardwick
Theatrical- Best Screenplay (Original or Adapted), (Nominated) Gary Hardwick
Theatrical- Best Supporting Actress, (Nominated) Gabrielle Union