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A look at Jean-Michel Basquiat’s life pre-fame, and how New York City, the times, the people and the movements around him formed the artist he became, BOOM FOR REAL weaves the story of Jean-Michel and the city with never before seen works, writings and photographs. Director Sara Driver worked closely and collaboratively with her friends and other artists who emerged from that scene: Nan Goldin, Jim Jarmusch, James Nares, Fab Five Freddy, Lee Quinones, Luc Sante and many others. As they participated in the film with their thoughts, period film footage, music, images, and anecdotes of their young friend, they helped visually tell the story of Jean-Michel’s downtown NYC –pre Aids, President Reagan, the real estate and art boom, and before anyone was motivated by money and ambition. The definition of fame, success and power were very different than today — to be a penniless but published poet was the height of success, until everything changed in the early 1980’s. This is New York City’s story before that change.