Oct 24, 2022

Chris Paul, RZA Board Basketball Doc ‘Handle With Care’ As EPs Ahead Of Pic’s Urbanworld Premiere


EXCLUSIVE: NBA All-Star Chris Paul and Wu-Tang Clan leader RZA have boarded RTG Features and Victory Creative Group’s basketball documentary Handle With Care: The Legend of The Notic Streetball Crew as executive producers, ahead of the film’s U.S. premiere at the Urbanworld Film Festival, slated for Thursday, October 27.

Canadian NBA stars Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Luguentz Dort have also come aboard as EPs, along with CJ Paul and Juanita Thompson of Ohh Dip!!! Productions.

Handle with Care chronicles the rise, fall and rebirth of The Notic, an upstart streetball collective from Canada in the early 2000s. While their creative basketball moves brought them global fame as teenagers, it set them at odds with the status quo in a battle involving self-expression, race and rejection. Driven by a 20-year quest to finish their mixtape trilogy, the documentary charts how the group of friends from Vancouver played outside the confines of the NBA yet still left an indelible imprint on the game forever.

The film won the True North Audience Award and the Best BC Film Award at last year’s Vancouver Film Festival, also screening in May as an official selection of the Hot Docs Canadian Documentary Festival. In addition to Urbanworld, it will soon play both the Windsor Film Festival and the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival.

Pic features appearances by The Notic’s Jermaine “Fresh” Foster, Rory “Disaster” Grace, Joey “King Handles” Haywood, Andrew “6 Fingaz” Liew, David “Dazzle” Mubanda, Jonathan “Johnny Blaze” Mubanda, Dauphin “Delight” Ngongo, Jamal “Whereyouat?” Parker and Mohammed “Goosebumps” Wenn. It was directed by Jeremy Schaulin-Rioux and Kirk Thomas, the original filmmakers behind the first two Notic mixtapes, and produced by Ryan Sidhoo, along with TELUS Originals, RTG Features and Victory Creative Group. CAA Media Finance is handling worldwide sales.

“Basketball is the backdrop of this documentary,” Paul told Deadline, “but the real story is how brotherhood can be created on the court and transform into a lifelong bond off the court.”

“The untold story of these Canadian ballplayers, who were inspired by American streetball and became an inspiration to others, shows the power of persistence and dedication to a craft,” added RZA. “Watching this group of young men from different backgrounds come together for a common cause to compete and achieve success is a story that resonates with me. How we handle ourselves and how we’re handled by others in our goals determines the outcome. So handle with care.”

Widely viewed as one of the greatest point guards in the history of the NBA, Paul currently plays for the Phoenix Suns, following stints with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers and New Orleans Hornets. Over the course of his career on the court, he has won the NBA’s Rookie of the Year Award, as well as an All-Star Game MVP Award, two Olympic gold medals and other accolades. Upcoming projects from Chris and CJ Paul’s Ohh Dip!!! Productions include the biographical film 61, based on the former’s upcoming memoir Sixty-One: Life Lessons From Papa, On and Off the Court, which is currently in development for Disney+. Chris Paul is also releasing his first children’s book, Basketball Dreams, in January.

RZA is a rapper, record producer, actor and filmmaker who received an Emmy nomination in 2020 for his main theme to the Hulu series Wu-Tang: An American Saga. He will next be seen starring alongside Russell Crowe in the thriller Poker Face, directed by the Oscar winner. Notable past credits for RZA on the producing front include Meet the Blacks, Wu-Tang Clan: Of Mics and Men, Wu-Tang: An American Saga and Cut Throat City.

The film and TV production and financing studio RTG Features is the sister studio to global basketball media leader Slam. Its upcoming slate includes a docuseries on legendary basketball coach John Thompson, from Peabody Award-winning director Kirk Fraser. Other projects include the recent documentary Alaskan Nets, executive produced by Chris Pratt; the limited series Pau Gasol: It’s About the Journey on Prime Video; the narrative podcast series The World of Five-Star; and the Ja Morant docuseries Promiseland, currently streaming on Crackle.

Chris Paul is repped by CAA; RZA by CAA and King, Holmes, Paterno & Berliner.