the first trailer for the teenage basquiat documentary is here

'Boom For Real' dives into what Basquiat was like as a homeless teen living in Tompkins Square Park.

by André-Naquian Wheeler
19 April 2018, 3:45pm

Screenshot via YouTube

The turbulent adolescence of Jean-Michel Basquiat definitely had a major influence on his legendary style. The Brooklyn-raised artist was homeless at 15 years old (living in Tompkins Square Park) and his mother frequently bounced in and out of psychiatric care. The upcoming documentary Boom For Real focuses on this underexplored phase of Basquiat’s life — before he sold a painting for $25,000 and collaborated with Andy Warhol. The new trailer for the film illustrates how the young, undiscovered artist had to navigate a very dangerous East Village in the 80s. We see shots of him graffitiing his nickname, “SAMO,” on the front door of broken down apartment buildings and making his first television appearances.

“When I first met him, just a few weeks sort of 16, he was living on the street staying with God knows whom,” a friend of Basquiat shares in the trailer. We then learn what SAMO meant for Basquiat — originating from the oft-repeated phrase “same ole’ shit,” which referenced the prevalence of crime, drugs, and poverty all around him.

Boom For Real looks like it will peel away the superstar image pop culture has built up over the years and get to the heart of Basquiat’s formative years. The documentary will hit theaters May 11.

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boom for real