Hip-Hop Documentary Style Wars Gets a Sequel

No, Style Wars 2 is not subtitled "Electric Boogaloo," but it is true that the long-awaited sequel to the PBS documentary by Tony Silver and Henry Chalfant Style Wars is on its way. Debuting nearly 30 years ago, the film covered the infancy of hip-hop, graffiti, break dancing, and other urban youth movements of the time. Despite stiff opposition from the villainous mayor Ed Koch, the culture flourished, becoming one of the largest co-cultures in America, as well as the rest of the world.

In this document, which has been posted on the Style Wars 2 official website, filmmaker Henry Chalfant makes it clear that this is not a nostalgic rehash of the original:

"It is a completely original film that makes intelligent and extremely

funny references to our nearly 30-year-old film, but in contemporary

situations. They use clever dialogue and audio quotes from Style Wars to

establish the context. In ironic, and often hilarious scenes they

engage the varios elements of the film's narrative, such as the conflict

with authorities, the cross-out wars and the emergence of graffiti in

the art world, in surprising ways.... The film that Amos Angeles and

Veli Silver are engaged in making is a refreshing departure from those

efforts. It is exceptional and I am more than glad to support them in

their efforts and eager to see the finished product."

While fans of the original should very well be excited, the news comes alongside some hardship. Public Art Films is currently accepting donations in a drive to restore the original 16mm celluloid and update it with a full HD makeover. While sitting a far distance from reaching their goal of $500,000, know that every drop in the bucket counts. Public Art Films had this to say on the matter:

"Twenty five years after its initial release there is still a strong,

global demand for the film. In an effort to keep up with this demand

we must be able to offer the film in the the most up-to-date formats.

We are embarking on a project to restore STYLE WARS and bring it up

to the highest technical standards available today in order to create

a High Definition edition of the film. We will be transferring the

original 16 mm negativeinto full HD 1080p while cleaning and restoring

the film during the process. The HD master will be better, sharper

and more brilliant than the original. From it we can strike new prints,

author new DVDs and participate in the digital economy."

Watch the trailer here, which features and appearance from Afrika Bambaataa:

If you've not seen the original Style Wars, don't sweat. The original film has been made available in its entirety on Style Wars' Vimeo profile.

And now we'll leave you with a handful of clips of the best breakdancing scenes from the film, which should finalize the notion that Rock Steady Crew was absolutely the realness and that The Dynamic Rockers were whack:

These clips contrast with other movies made about the breakdancing scene in the '80's, like this clip from Breakin':

We are also curious to find out what happened to Cap, because that dude sucked.

Style Wars 2 is the sequel the the original Style Wars documentary. Public Art Films is currently accepting donations to restore the original film to full HD. For more information about the film and where you can donate, please visit this link.

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Ryan Burk