Men In Black

Spielberg's Role: Executive Producer
US Release Date: 1997

"To Protect the World from the Scum of the Universe"

Even before the release of Independence Day, Will Smith was working on his second blockbuster Science Fiction Flick. Originally turning down the role for agent Jay (in order to avoid sci-fi typecasting), Smith was personally invited by Spielberg to play one of the Men in Black. Tommy Lee Jones co-stars as the more mature agent Kay.

The Men in Black are the worlds first, best and only defense against criminals from above. Armed with the most powerful weapons on the planet, they are known only as the men in black. Black suits, black sunglasses and very large chrome guns. There is an alien on earth who is a little out of control and only two men can stop it....if they can only figure out how to use those guns.

Quick Facts

Columbia Pictures started production March 14, 1996

Budget:$80 million

Video Release: November 25 1997 on VHS and Laser Disk. DVD soon after.

Plot Summary

Directed by Barry Sonnenfeld, Men in Black follows the exploits of agents Kay (Jones) and Jay (Smith), members of a top-secret organization established to monitor and police alien activity on Earth. The two Men in Black find themselves in the middle of the deadly plot by an intergalactic terrorist (Vincent D'Onofrio) who has arrived on Earth to assassinate two ambassadors from opposing galaxies. In order to prevent worlds from colliding, the MiB must track down the terrorist and prevent the destruction of Earth. It's just another typical day for the Men in Black.**

The film also stars Linda Fiorentino as the glib Dr. Laurel Weaver, New York City's Deputy Medical Examiner, who thinks she's seen it all until she meets the Men in Black. Based on the Lowell Cunningham comic book series with a screenplay by Ed Solomon, the film is produced by Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald, and executive produced by Steven Spielberg. Academy AwardŽ-winning special makeup effects artist Rick Baker (Ed Wood,Batman Forever) is the designer and creator of Men in Black's menagerie of alien creatures. **

Watch the trailer

Credits -Who's Who

Tommy Lee Jones
Academy Award-winner Tommy Lee Jones most recently starred as the villainous Two-Face in Batman Forever. Among his critically-acclaimed performances are his star turn as baseball legend Ty Cobb in Cobb, as well as Blue Sky, The Client, Blown Away, and The Fugitive, for which he won both the Oscar and the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor. His additional film credits include JFK, for which he was nominated for an OscarŽ, Under Siege and Heaven and Earth.**
Tommy Lee Jones (Kay)
this picture was taken from Volcano
Will Smith
Will Smith most recently garnered acclaim and a NATO/ShoWest award for his performance as the smooth talking Mike Lowrey in Bad Boys, which to date has grossed more than $138 million. His film credits also include Six Degrees of Separation, Made in America, starring Whoopi Goldberg and Ted Danson, Where the Day Takes You, and the mega hit sci-fi adventure Independence Day. He was also the star of TV's top-rated The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. **

Will Smith will not only be staring in the film, but will be contributing to the soundtrack. The video for the MIB title song co-stars Tommy Lee Jones and a computer generated alein backup singer. It is said that Will Smith turned down the role until personaly asked by Steven Spielberg.

Will Smith (Jay) Picture above
is from Independence Day

Linda Fiorentino
-Dr. Laurel Weaver-
Linda Fiorentino received critical acclaim and a best actress award from the New York Film Critics Circle for her performance in John Dahl's erotic thriller The Last Seduction. She recently starred opposite Ray Liotta in Dahl's Unforgettable and in William Friedkin's thriller Jade. Her other film credits include Gotcha!, After Hours and The Moderns. **

Vincent D'Onofrio
-unnamed terrorist-
Vincent D'Onofrio will next star in Whole Wide World and Feeling Minnesota. His other films include Strange Days, Ed Wood, The Player, JFK and Full Metal Jacket. **

Carel Struycken

Rip Torn

Barry Sonnenfeld
Barry Sonnenfeld most recently directed the comedy hit Get Shorty, starring John Travolta and Rene Russo, which received a Golden Globe nomination. He also directed the box office successes The Addams Family and its sequel Addams Family Values, as well as For Love or Money. **

Walter Parkes
A three-time Academy Award nominee, Walter Parkes heads the Motion Picture Division of DreamWorks SKG along with co-head Laurie MacDonald. The DreamWorks division evolved from the department Parkes and MacDonald built and headed at Amblin Entertainment. Some of Parkes's other credits include War Games (writer), Awakenings (producer) and Sneakers (producer, co-writer).**

Ed Solomon
Ed Solomon's screenwriting credits include Leaving Normal and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. **

**information gathered from Sony pictures web pages