AFI Movie Club: ANTWONE FISHER – American Film Institute
Antwone Fisher Film Still - Derek Luke



ANTWONE FISHER was the directorial debut of AFI Life Achievement Award recipient Denzel Washington, who also co-starred in the movie. In 2002, the film was honored with an AFI AWARD for providing “a clarion call for all films that strive to bring unspoken topics into the national conversation.”

Movie Trivia about ANTWONE FISHER

-DID YOU KNOW Antwone Fisher worked for Sony Pictures Studios as a security guard for eight months before he began writing the screenplay for his own story? While as a guard, he encountered several Sony executives who offered to have someone write the screenplay for him, but Fisher wanted to tell his story in his own words.

-DID YOU KNOW Antwone Fisher took a screenwriting course in the basement of a church? His teacher was a former college roommate of Sony producer Todd Black, who encouraged Fisher to tell his story.

-DID YOU KNOW Todd Black and his producing partner, Randa Haines, gave Antwone Fisher the money that allowed him to quit his security guard job and focus on writing?

-DID YOU KNOW before starring in ANTWONE FISHER – while working at the Sony Pictures gift shop – Derek Luke became friendly with the real Antwone Fisher after meeting him in the lunchroom?

-DID YOU KNOW Derek Luke learned of getting the role of the title character while working a shift at the Sony gift shop? Director Denzel Washington walked right up to Luke and said, “Hey, how you doing, Antwone?”

-DID YOU KNOW nearly all the Navy extras that are seen in the film were actually off-duty officers from the bases where the film was shot? Several Naval bases and areas in San Diego, CA, were used as locations throughout the production.

-DID YOU KNOW Derek Luke won for Best Male Lead at the Film Independent Spirit Awards? Just four years prior, it was the same awards ceremony that Luke had worked as a waiter!

-DID YOU KNOW Antwone Fisher used his screenplay as the basis for an autobiographical book titled, “Finding Fish: A Memoir”?

Learn more at the AFI Catalog.


The movie doesn’t end at the credits: Family-friendly Discussion Questions

Join the conversation on Twitter and Instagram now using #AFIMovieClub. Or post your responses in the comment section below.

-Why was it important for director Denzel Washington to cast a relatively unknown actor in the title role?

-Why was Antwone Fisher often losing his temper and fighting with his fellow seaman?

-How would you describe the relationship between Antwone Fisher and Commander Jerome Davenport throughout the film?

-How does Antwone show his gratitude to Berta and Commander Davenport for inviting him to Thanksgiving dinner? What was the significance of his gift?

-Why was it important for Antwone to see Mrs. Tate again?

-Why was it important for Antwone to find his family?

-What was Antwone’s family’s reaction when they found out about his existence?

-What does Antwone help Commander Davenport overcome?

-Why was it important for the real Antwone Fisher to tell his own story?

-How would you rate ANTWONE FISHER?

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AFI has created a global, virtual gathering of those who love the movies. Each day’s film is accompanied by fun facts, family-friendly discussion points and material from the AFI Archive to enrich your viewing experience.

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