Disney+: Rise, the incredible true story of three brothers who became NBA basketball players – Actus…

Available on Disney+, the film Rise: the true story of the Antetokounmpo tells the incredible destiny of young Nigerian emigrants who made their careers in the NBA. Meet.

What is it about ?

Nigerian emigrants who have taken refuge in Greece, Vera and Charles Antetokounmpo struggle daily to survive and meet the needs of their 5 children. Under the permanent threat of expulsion, the couple tries by all means to obtain Greek citizenship, but there are many administrative obstacles. When they are not selling trinkets to tourists on the streets of Athens with the rest of the family, their sons Giannis and Thanasis, encouraged by their father, take the opportunity to play basketball with the youngsters of a local team.

Without any real sporting background, over the weeks they developed great aptitudes for this discipline, even seeking to work even harder to become internationally renowned athletes, alongside their brother Kostas. In 2013, Giannis was even spotted by an agent who convinced him to register for the NBA tryouts, which he did without really believing it. This decision changed his life and that of the whole family: last year, Giannis and Thanasis contributed to the first victory of the Milwaukee Bucks for half a century, succeeding the Los Angeles Lakers, whose Kostas had joined the team the previous year.

Rise: the true story of the Antetokounmpo, a film directed by Akin Omotoso, written by Arash Amel with Dayo Okeniyi, Uche Agada, Ral Agada, Yetide Badaki… Available on Disney+

AlloCiné: What attracted you to this project?

Akin Omotoso : I have always been a big basketball fan and I knew the fascinating story of Giannis Antetokounmpo. It really exploded in 2015 and I thought this was the basketball movie I would like to make. In 2019, I found myself in Los Angeles to pitch other projects. To my surprise, I found Giannis on the cover of Sports Illustrated, a sports magazine, saying that Disney was going to make a movie about his life.

I have everything immediately called my agent to get me an appointment. I dreamed about this film for over six years, so I had a clear and perfect vision for this project. It took over a year. But Disney, I believe, fell for my 2016 film, Vaya ; I was finally able to meet their entire team and it was done. I was finally able to realize my dream with Rise. I think I convinced them because I spoke from my heart. And of course, I kept this magazine with Giannis on the cover on my nightstand.

Disney+: rise, the incredible true story of three brothers who became nba basketball players - actus...
2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Dayo and Uche, how did you get into the shoes of these basketball heroes, Charles and Giannis Antetokounmpo?

Dayo Okeniyi (Charles): It took a long time to learn who they are and the dramatic journey they had to become the legends we know today. There are quite a few videos of them on YouTube and this allowed us to observe their movements and learn to imitate their accent. We even had the right to a language coach to be able to imitate them to perfection.

Uche Agada (Giannis): I also watched the documentary, I Am Giannis of Nike that can be found on Youtube. It helped me understand him better. And of course, even though we are good at basketball, we took specific and intense courses for more than two months before the start of filming. Some of their moves and passing games are unique to them. So we had to learn to play like them.

Tell us about the challenge of making such a complex film with breathtaking basketball scenes?

Akin Omotoso: The biggest challenge was, as for many other productions, to shoot in the midst of a pandemic and with the restrictions and precautions that this imposes. For me, the most important thing was to be faithful to the history and the reality of what Giannis and his family lived. They were involved in the production of the film and were of great support to us.

I really tried to be the most realistic and the most authentic with this fantastic and dramatic epic. It was magical to be able to shoot in Athens, Greece, and especially on the same basketball court where Giannis trained. Most of the other sets were also within the perimeters of the places where the family lived. These were emotional moments for everyone.

What are the messages of this film?

Akin Omotoso: That you must always persevere in life and never lose sight of your dreams. It is also a film about inner strength, faith, which guides us. In life, you have to have blind faith in yourself, total confidence in what you are made for in order to achieve your goals. I hope this film will inspire our young people to persevere and fight for their dreams.

Disney+: rise, the incredible true story of three brothers who became nba basketball players - actus...
2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Dayo and Uche, why this fascination with basketball? In the end, what is this film about for you two?

Dayo Okeniyi: It’s a family movie. And how together they managed to survive. We have always had basketball in our blood and this sport allows us to become someone, to find meaning in our lives.

Uche Agada: Yes, that’s the message of the film: believe in yourself but also in others. Together, we are always stronger alone. Dayo and I are brothers, this strong feeling of being one, we know what that means. It is together that these two brothers succeeded in breaking through and becoming such recognized athletes today. Their journey is so fascinating, and perfect to inspire us on our own path. It’s all about never giving up and always working harder. Dayo and I grew up loving basketball. It’s in our veins and I don’t think I can live without this sport.

Do you have other basketball players who inspire you, whom you admire, beyond the Antetokounmpo brothers?

Uche Agada: For me, the one who gave me the passion for basketball was Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat. I have always been blown away by his explosive and ultra-fast way of playing. What intensity on the pitch!

Dayo Okeniyi: As for me, I am hypnotized by the way of playing of Kyrie Irving who plays for the Brooklyn Nets. I’m blown away by the way he puts up incredible points, basket after basket.

Related Posts

error: Content is protected !!