Interesting Questions, Facts and Information
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Interesting Questions, Facts, and Information
Lean on Me
1980s. The film had the feel of a late seventies movie, but the film release date was 1989. Joe Clark had left Eastside as a teacher in the sixties when it had been a thriving place of learning, only to return to it twenty years later as the last chance principal.
|Did the students pass the State Proficiency exam the first time they took it? ||Lean on Me
No. The students basically bombed the state skills test the first time; about 75% of the students failed. Clark was outraged and demanded the teachers put more effort into their teaching. A Saturday reading program was established, t-shirts were printed, and a countdown calendar was created. They passed the second time. In real life there was no skills test crisis; it did make for good movie material though.
|What song does the principal have the students sing just before they take the state test for the second time?||Lean on Me
Lean On Me. "Lean On Me" was one of those symbolic songs sung in the 60s and 70s, and was a perfect fit for the theme of learning to lean on others to help get through the tough times. This assembly was so very different to the other assemblies Clark held. The students and staff joyfully rallied together, stood, and sang the theme song together. They had learned they had to lean on one another in order not to fall.
|The high school featured in the movie was located in what American state?||Lean on Me
New Jersey. The movie was based on the real Eastside High which was located in New Jersey. The students and the school were featured in the movie.
|The principal was known to carry around what two objects while he walked the school halls?||Lean on Me
bullhorn and baseball bat. Right off Clark used a bullhorn to get his point across to the students. He then began carrying a bat. He said they called him Crazy Joe Clark, now they could call him Batman. This was kind of funny given that Morgan Freeman was one of the principal actors in "Batman Begins", a part that came much later in his career.
|Clark did more than a few things that got people upset, but which action got him into trouble with city officials as well as parents? ||Lean on Me
chaining the school doors shut. Clark discovered that even though he threw the drug dealing students out of the school, their friends would simply let them back in. So Clark chain locked the school doors shut, getting him into trouble with parents and the city fire chief. It was a teacher who threw a desk at Clark. Actually he tipped it over in a rage at Clark.
|Who was the parent who formed a vendetta against the principal?||Lean on Me
Barrett. One of the first things Clark did was to throw out all the students who were the troublemakers. Barrett's son was one of them, and she decided she would "get" Clark. She came very close to getting Clark out of Eastside. She hadn't counted on how much the students, and even staff, came to love him.
|What was the name of the teacher who later became principal?||Lean on Me
Joe Clark. They called him "Crazy" Joe Clark because of his unorthodox approach to getting things done in education. And although they thought him crazy they knew he was the one to save Eastside High from the slum school it had become.
|Mr. Clark meets a student named Thomas Samms, who had been kicked out the day before. He insists to Mr. Clark that his banishment is a mistake. Mr. Clark allows him back, but not before Samms admits to committing illegal acts. During the exchange, what does Mr. Clark tell Samms to do?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
Jump off the roof.. Samms is the only banished student who begs for and is allowed back into school. As the movie progresses, Samms becomes one of the principals staunchest supporters, and he has a pivotal role in the important school song scene.
|What does Mr. Clark NOT suggest that residents do to help improve student performance at Eastside?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
Stop acting like the whole world is against you.. At this point, the insulted woman browbeats the mayor into appointing her to the school board in order to get rid of Clark.
|Which woman is greatly insulted by Clark's words during a board meeting with residents?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
Ms. Barrett. Tony Award winning actress Lynne Thigpen (1997's "American Daughter") is outstanding as the angry, conniving apologist for rotten student behavior. Her son is among those banished from the school, and she plays the pity pot about his discouragement leading to bad acts in school. She may be best known for her role as the chief on the PBS series "Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?"
|During his first assembly, Mr. Clark is greeted by a girl named Kaneisha. How does he know her?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
He was her principal in fifth-grade.. The actress playing Kaneisha would later star for a couple of years on NBC's "A Different World". Like most supporting roles in the film, Kaneisha is not a character in whole, but a composite of several wrapped into one. In the film, however, the very bright Kaneisha brings Clark both joy and worry.
|Mr. Clark immediately makes enemies at his first staff meeting, which includes the demotion of one head coach. Which sport did the fired coach, a regular on the NBC medical show "ER", work at?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
football. Clark tells the beleaguered coach that he's being replaced because he's tired of seeing the team lose all the time. Incidentally, all Eastside teams are nicknamed the Ghosts. It is believed that part of the Eastside landscape was built atop a cemetery.
John Avildsen. Hughes is best known for his films about teenage angst like "The Breakfast Club". Poitier starred in the 1960s memorable bad school movie, "To Sir With Love". Singleton's school-related work is "Higher Learning", while Avildsen directed "The Karate Kid" and "Rocky," the latter for which he won an Oscar.
|When the film first pays attention to Eastside High, what song is playing in the background?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
"Welcome to the Jungle" by Guns 'N Roses. The film offers an incredibly diverse music score, including the title song. However, the original version of "Lean on Me" by Bill Withers is not used. Instead, the Club Noveau version from the 1980s is used on the soundtrack. The version used in the film is an original
|In the beginning, Joe Clark's union brothers sell him out during some tough labor negotiations. They agree to new contract stipulations behind his back. In return, Mr. Clark is to be transferred to which lower elementary school?||"Lean On Me" - Part I
School 6. Today, Paterson has 34 elementary schools and middle schools, and most are NOT like the wonderful School 6 seen in the film. However, School 6 is considered less likely to raise strife for the Paterson Board of Education, thus making it easier to stifle Clark.
Eastside High School. Eastside High School students continue to do poorly on standardized tests, despite valiant teacher efforts and millions of dollars being devoted to turning things around. Clark's rather extreme ways earn him the nickname "Crazy Joe."
|As time goes on, Mr. Clark takes to carrying a controversial prop with him. What is this questionable item?||"Lean On Me" Part II
A baseball bat. Clark even dares the fire chief publicly to call him "Crazy Joe" for carrying the prop, and tells everyone to call him "Batman". The newspapers love the name and run many pictures of Clark toting the prop. However, he never uses or threatens to use the item in the film.
|School board lawyer Mr. Rosenberg makes one dumb and rather racist statement, when discussing the chains on the school door policy with Clark and Napier. What is the remark?||"Lean On Me" Part II
"I thought you people didn't like chains?". Surprisingly, the remark draws little more than quick stares from Clark and Napier. The fire chief's labeling of the Eastside students as "savages" however, doesn't please the trouble-making parent Ms. Barrett. However, even she gives the insensitive statement short shrift, in order to continue the bullying of the mayor to arrest Mr. Clark for having the chains on the school door exits.
|Where in the school does Mr. Clark first hear the beautiful rendition of the revamped school song?||"Lean On Me" Part II
In the boys' bathroom.. It is performed by Samms and four cohorts, who are caught loitering during class time. Clark demands they sing the school song upon the threat of a three-day suspension.What comes out of their mouths is poetry. He is told by the singers that the author of the revamped school song is the new music teacher. She later tells Clark she rewrote the song because the students found the original boring.
|A bright Hispanic girl asks to switch her elective from home economics. Clark grants her request, noting that the class she wants to take could lead to a high-paying job in what field? ||"Lean On Me" Part II
Automotive Engineering. She wants to switch to auto shop. In the film it is obvious that Clark's heart belongs the students. He cares beyond the normal principal-student circle, helping them with family problems and spending fun time with them. He is sharp with them, but he mixes in a whole lot of love and practical wisdom.
|Which award-winning TV actor portrays Clark's friend and Board of Education superintendent Frank Napier?||"Lean On Me" Part II
Robert Guilluame. By and large Mr. Napier is supportive of Clark, battling even the mayor on behalf of the principal. But he, too, recognizes that Clark steps over the line, and during one argument has to remind his colleague that it is he, and not the principal, who is the head person in charge.
All four of the actors featured in this question have had stellar film and/or television careers. Before his role as Mr. Napier, Guillaume won Emmy Awards as the irascible title character "Benson" and as the sarcastic butler (the same Benson character) in "Soap". Poitier starred in "To Sir With Love" and was the first African-American to win a Best Actor Oscar for his role as Homer Smith in 1963's "Lilies of the Field". Braugher had major roles in "Glory" and TV's "Homicide: Life on the Streets", winning an Emmy Award for his work in the latter. Rhames has starred in many projects, winning a Golden Globe Award for his role in HBO's "Don King: Only in America".
|Which composer's work is being rehearsed when Mr. Clark and the music teacher have their nasty argument?
||"Lean On Me" Part II
Mozart. Mr. Clark rudely interrupts the music class in order to demand that all students be taught the school anthem. The music teacher complains that she is in the middle of teaching a complicated section of the piece, and resents being interrupted. Of course, that annoys Mr. Clark, and he winds up firing her.
Paterson. All four cities have dealt with serious education problems over the past 20 years. All have been classified as Abbott school districts, which means they receive extra government funding for special needs programs and additional faculty.
A student is assaulted by a violent intruder.. The tactic does keep intruders out, but it violates the state fire code. In NJ, all public buildings must keep their exits barrier-free, including chains.
|What does Mr. Darnell do that leads to a nasty showdown between him and Mr. Clark in the principal's office?||"Lean On Me" Part II
He is picking up a piece of paper off the floor as Clark is addressing the students.. In "Lean On Me," Mr. Darnell had already been humiliated by Clark's demoting him as the football coach, so he is in no mood to allow himself to be abused publicly again.
The actor portraying Mr. Darnell (Michael Beach) has been a semi-regular on "ER" for several seasons, playing an AIDS-infected husband who gave the disease to his wife. He has had a more prominent regular role on the NBC prime-time drama "Third Watch", and feature roles in such films as "Waiting to Exhale" and "Cadence".
|As Mr. Clark addresses the students, Vice Principal Levias comes with news that Eastside's students have passed the Basic Skills exam. Who is the first to give Mr. Clark a giant celebratory hug?||"Lean On Me" Part III
Samms. Yes, Samms has come a long way since he successfully begged Mr. Clark to allow him back to school. He gets good grades and behaves himself. He's not perfect, though, as observed in the scene when he is caught stealing a meatball from a fellow student's lunch plate.
|Ms. Barrett is failing in her efforts to get the students to go home so the board meeting can continue. Mr. Clark then appears outside and pleads with his students to go home. What does he first say to the students?||"Lean On Me" Part III
"I wish I could get this kind of turnout at study hall.". Prior to Mr. Clark's appearance before the students, Ms. Barrett launches a series of insults at the principal. She justifies her attempts to have Clark removed by telling the students that they deserve a good principal. Samms comes right back at her, saying, "We don't want a good principal, we want Mr. Clark!"
|Mr. Clark is reluctant to get involved at first, even when the mayor tells him that he has to for the sake of the students. How does Clark end his response that begins, "I don't have to do anything but....?"||"Lean On Me" Part III
stay black and die.. The mayor reminds Clark that such an attitude won't help the situation, but he makes no headway until he reminds Clark that the only ones who'll lose if the protest continues are the students. Says the mayor, "I'll have the law on my side." Clark will agree to intercede.
|Ms. Barrett's board meeting to remove Mr. Clark is interrupted by loud street chants from hundreds of students. What does Mr. Rosenberg tell the mayor the students are doing?
||"Lean On Me" Part III
Participating in "an exercise of their First Amendment Rights.". Hundreds of students converge outside board offices, which happens to be near the police station where their principal is jailed. The kids are angry, repeating the demand "Free Mr. Clark." The mayor winds up asking Mr. Clark to intercede.
|In perhaps the film's most pivotal scene, Ms. Levias confronts Mr. Clark after he embarrasses her in public again. She's had enough, and calls him what to his face?||"Lean On Me" Part III
An egomaniacal windbag.. Clark fights back, defending his actions as claiming he has received little support. Ms. Levias demands that she be transferred to another school. She also tells Mr. Clark that although some of the teachers may not like him, they have supported his efforts to raise the test scores. She points out that Clark inappropriately uses the word "I" in describing the extra work going on at Eastside, when, in fact, all of the school's 300 teachers have been equally involved.