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MR. 3000

About The Production
Reading the script, Stone certainly found himself attracted to its playful, edgy comedy but he was also surprised to find such a poignant human story at its core. "I see MR. 3000 quite simply as the story of a selfish man who learns to be selfless,” Stone says. "It's about how even in middle age you can make a change – although change is never easy!”

Stone was also attracted to the film's setting against the high-stakes, mediadriven, star-filled world of professional sports, a world ripe for satire. "Sports legends like Stan Ross are sort of larger than life, so one of the fun things about MR. 3000 is that Stan suddenly finds himself in a situation that lots of ordinary people find themselves in – being out of shape, under the gun, and realizing he's not quite the guy he once was,” comments Stone. "It cuts him down to size in a very funny way. Stan really wants to be a hero, of course, but he thinks it's all about hitting the ball. And somehow the mixture of his talent and his ego have come together to form a monster! What he discovers is that there's a lot more to being considered great than just a statistic. He has to learn to be a great person far more than a great athlete.”

Stone also sees MR. 3000 as a romantic comedy about a man learning to love for the first time in the middle of his life, when he re-encounters the one woman who has always stayed heavy on his mind: journalist Mo Simmons. "I love the character of Mo because she truly rocks Stan Ross' world,” says Stone. "He's never admitted his feelings for her because he was always the suave ladies' man who wanted to keep his options open. But now the sparks are flying – both good and bad – between them again and it's a lot of fun.”

Although he played Little League as a child, and still enjoys watching the game, Stone thinks MR. 3000 is about much more than the joy of sports. "I respect baseball and I wanted to really capture the fun and entertainment of it in the film, but what most inspired me was this story of a man with this huge bat battling himself,” he says. "With Bernie Mac in the role of Ross, it becomes a story about a man taking a different direction in his life with both funny and moving results.”

Perhaps best known for his role as the embattled stay-at-home dad sharing his comic tales of woe in the acclaimed "Bernie Mac Show,” Bernie Mac's brash, tell-it-like-itis, relatable mannerisms have established him as one of the leading comic voices of his generation. Although Mac has been seen in numerous memorable film performances, MR. 3000 marks his first outing at the center of a movie that revolves around his uniquely dramatic comedy style.

From the very beginning, the filmmakers of MR. 3000 knew the role of Stan Ross was tailor-made for Mac, who not only has a penchant for exposing the funny side of real, relatable human foibles, but is a rabid sports fan on top of that.

"MR. 3000 could not have been made without the existence of Bernie Mac,” says director Charles Stone III. "This role is about a larger than life figure who displays raw candor and humor – and nobody exudes those like Bernie. He brings fire and power to his performance because, unlike Stan, Bernie is already a very real, very grounded person who understands a lot about both comedy and life.”

Stone continues: "In playing Stan, Bernie had to move through a lot of contradictions because Stan is a guy with a million dollar smile yet he can be very obnoxious, he's a guy who's dapper and charming yet is a little blinded by his own selfishness, he's an amazing athlete but he's also a man who hasn't quite come to terms with himself and the world around him – and all at the same time he has to be at once very human and very funny.”

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