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May 2005
Back in the Day News

Worldwide Premiere on BET Set forFriday, May 13 at
7:30 p.m. ET/PT on BET; DVD Hits Stores on May 24th

LOS ANGELES(May 6, 2005)– What do you do when your past catches up with you? It’s the question at the heart of this new-school classic depicting a young man at life’s crossroads. Emmy Award® and Golden Globe® winnerVing Rhames(Mission Impossible, Don King: Only In America) and platinum-selling rapperJa Rule(Assault on Precinct 13) star in the complex urban dramaBACK IN THE DAY,making its worldwide broadcast premiere on BET onFriday, May 13at7:30 p.m. ET/PT. In addition, theBACK IN THE DAYDVD will debut in stores on May 24. Directed by James Hunter, this gritty tale of love and redemption features an all-star ensemble cast includingPam Grier(The L Word),Frank Langella(Unscripted),Tatyana Ali(The Brothers),Giancarlo Esposito, (Law & Order),Tia Carrere(Supernova),Debi Morgan(Eve’s Bayou), andJoe Morton(Ali).  Hunter shares co-screenwriting credits onBACK IN THE DAYwith Michael Ruffanello.
InBACK IN THE DAY, Ja Rule portrays Reggie Cooper, a young man from the rough side of the tracks who lives with his divorced, affluent father (Esposito) in order to avoid the gang activity that almost claimed his teenage life in his mother’s neighborhood (Grier). When Reggie reconnects with a recently paroled friend from his past (Rhames), he slips back into a life of crime with fatal consequences. Reggie becomes involved in the murder of a local preacher (Morton) and in the aftermath of this crime, he falls in love with the preacher’s daughter (Ali). Ultimately, he must choose between losing everything he cares about and his lifelong loyalty to his oldest friend. BACK IN THE DAYchronicles the powerful story of one man’s search for personal redemption.
“BET is very excited about this relationship with DEJ Productions onBACK IN THE DAY, a film that depicts urban life with dramatic realism and emotional depth,” said Herbert Niles, BET Vice President of Film Development & Program Acquisitions. “The performances by Ving Rhames and Ja Rule are compelling and unforgettable, and BET is pleased to have the opportunity to introduce this riveting and unique story on our network.”
Ja Rule is confident that viewers will relate to the film’s message. “Almost every aspect of life involves choices, and this film deals with some of the hardest choices any man might face – choosing between the love of a woman and loyalty to a long-time friend,” said Ja Rule.  “Anyone who has ever been at an important crossroads in their life will really feel the drama and pressure facing these characters.”

BACK IN THE DAYwas produced by DEJ Productions, a subsidiary of Blockbuster, Inc. and is distributed by First Look Home Entertainment. Marketing support for the DVD release includes trailers on premium DEJ and First Look titles, an extensive BET on-air and online promotional campaign, as well as national radio promotions in Top 30 markets.
Editor's Note: Screeners and artwork are available upon request; contact Zabrina Horton, BET Corporate Communications at (818) 655-6737 orzabrina.horton@bet.net. For DVD distribution information, contact Ellene Miles, The DuVernay Agency at (323) 860-7060 orellene@dvapr.com.
BET, a subsidiary of Viacom, Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B), is the nation's leading television network providing quality entertainment, music, news and public affairs programming for the African-American audience. The BET Network reaches more than 80 million households according to Nielsen media research, and can be seen in theUnited States,Canadaand theCaribbean. BET is a dominant consumer brand in the urban marketplace with a diverse group of branded businesses: BET.com, the Number 1 Internet portal for African Americans; BET Digital Networks - BET Jazz, BET Gospel and BET Hip Hop, attractive alternatives for cutting-edge entertainment tastes; BET Event Productions, specializing in a full range of event production services, including event management, venue selection, talent recruitment, sound, lighting and stage production; and BET Books, the nation's leading publisher of African-American themed romance novels under the Arabesque imprint which also publishes compelling fiction under the Sepia imprint and inspirational fiction and nonfiction under the New Spirit imprint.
DEJ Productions Inc. is a leading independent entertainment company that acquires and distributes product in the theatrical, home entertainment and television arenas. DEJ Productions is a wholly owned subsidiary of Blockbuster Inc. Since its inception in 1999, DEJ Productions has commanded one of the largest acquisitions and distribution infrastructures in independent film, with an average of 35 films a year. Among them, DEJ Productions acquired all English-speaking rights, including those inNorth America, to the 2003 Academy Award® winning filmMonster, starring Charlize Theron. DEJ also co-financed and producedCrashwith Stratus Films, written and directed by Paul Haggis, which will be released by Lions Gate Films later this year. DEJ Productions Inc. is headquartered inLos Angeles,California.
First Look Home Entertainment, a division of First Look Media, specializes in diverse independent films and special interest programs that include First Look Pictures theatrical art house and foreign releases, as well as video premieres and genre-specific films. These diverse titles have helped First Look Home Entertainment grow rapidly. Revenues since inception of the division have increased on average 77% per year. The current home entertainment release schedule includes the upcoming Sundance hit,September Tapes,National Lampoons Blackball(starring Vince Vaughn), and the recently released charming romantic comedy,Perfect Opposites(starring Piper Perabo, Martin Hendersen, Jennifer Tilly, Artie Lange), First Look Pictures’ theatrical release,Mayor of the Sunset Strip(starring Rodney Bingenheimer, and featuring Coldplay, No Doubt, Cher, David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Oasis, Courtney Love, to name a few), the 15 year television series hit,Unsolved Mysteries(featuring acclaimed host, Robert Stack),Stateside(starring Rachael Leigh Cook, Jonathan Tucker, Val Kilmer, Carrie Fisher, Joe Mantegna), andThe Last Sign(starring Andie MacDowell and Tim Roth).


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