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USA: Twentieth Century Fox
Cast: Nick Cannon, Zoe Saldana, Orlando Jones, Leonard Roberts, GQ, Jason Weaver, Earl Poitier, Candace Carey, Shay Roundtree, Omar J Dorsey, Miguel Gaetan, J Anthony Brown, Angela Gibbs, Tyreese Burnett, Brandon Christopher Hirsch, Al Wiggin
Director: Charles Stone
USA Rated: PG-13 for innuendo and language
USA Release Date: 13 December 2002
For fans of America's show-style marching bands, halftime is game time.
A squad of players, some 300 strong and armed with musical instruments, takes over the field, commanding attention with their stirring, spectacular display of choreography and musicianship.
As a team, they sport their own stars. Like a quarterback leading his team to victory, the drumline, a troupe of talented percussionists whose cadenced rhythm rocks the rafters of any dome, bring crowds to their feet with their daring feats of music and athleticism.
Into this rigorous, ritualistic world comes a kid from a different culture, Devon Miles (Nick Cannon), a young gifted hip-hop drummer from Harlem, who wins a full music scholarship to Atlanta A & T University with the hopes of gaining a spot as a drummer on the school's renowned marching band's drumline. Devon, sporting a talent that is both raw and undisciplined, has one problem: he marches to the beat of his own drum.
Surmounting the odds, he snares a spot as a starter, much to the disdain of a resentful senior class band member, Sean Taylor (Leonard Roberts), who dismisses the freshman's skills as bogus. When Taylor discovers something amiss about Devon's abilities, he alerts Dr Aaron Lee (Orlando Jones), the school's demanding, dedicated band director, who suspects that the upstart talent may have duped the school into awarding him his scholarship. That situation threatens not only Devon's future at the school but, more immediately, his spot on the band's drumline just before the heralded Big Southern Classic, one of the regions most popular musical competition, spotlighting some of the area's best college bands and the winner-take-all jackpot of $100 000 for the school.
Now, with so much money, and possibly his own job, at stake, can Dr Lee afford to pass up such a prize by keeping his star drummer on the sidelines?