Three movies released in 1991—Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Boyz n the Hood, and Grand Canyon—captured a vision of Los Angeles as a powder keg that was about to explode. These films portrayed a city under the building pressure of police brutality, gang violence, and racial segregation; one year later, the Rodney King riots broke out across Los Angeles. This week on Alta Live, Boyz n the Hood producer Steve Nicolaides joins Alta Journal contributor Tim Greiving to chat about making movies in 1991 and the eerie parallels between Hollywood fiction and Los Angeles fact.
About the guests:
Steve Nicolaides is known for producing When Harry Met Sally… (1989), Boyz n the Hood (1991), A Few Good Men (1992), and The Forgotten (2004). Throughout the 2000s, he produced box office hits including School of Rock (2003), Nacho Libre (2006), and Beverly Hills Chihuahua (2008). He is from Los Angeles.
Tim Greiving is a film-music journalist in Los Angeles. He contributes to the Los Angeles Times and NPR and teaches film-music courses at the University of Southern California.•
Check out these links to some of the topics Nicolaides and Greiving touched on:
- Read Tim Greiving’s story “Sitting on a Powder Keg,” published in Alta’s Summer 2021 issue.
- Watch the three 1991 movies that Tim Greiving featured in his story and that Steve Nicolaides and Greiving focused on: Boyz n the Hood, Grand Canyon, and Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
- Read this NPR retrospective that, 25 years later, looks back on the beating of Rodney King by the LAPD.
- Watch some favorite movies about Los Angeles that Steve Nicolaides, Tim Greiving, Mary Melton, and Alta Live host Beth Spotswood shared: La La Land (2016), L.A. Confidential (1997), Menace II Society (1993), Training Day (2001), Shampoo (1975), Chinatown (1974), Collateral (2004), Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003), L.A. Story (1991), Crash (2004), Swingers (1996), and Poetic Justice (1993).
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