For over two decades, The Best Man has been at the forefront of Black culture. The cast and its provocative storyline have sparked hundreds of conversations since the release of the first film in 1999. It also birthed two two sequels, one of which was released today: The Best Man: The Final Chapters.
The story begins with Harper Stewart (Taye Diggs), an up-and-coming author on the verge of success, who is selected by his friend Lance Sullivan (Morris Chestnut), to be the best man at his upcoming wedding. Stewart’s new book Unfinished Business was chosen for Oprah’s Book Club, and it also contains a few unknown secrets from his past. When that secret gets out, it threatens his friendship with Lance, along with several other relationships. After a tumultuous few days, Harper is able to get Lance to the altar – but not without dire consequences.
Years would go by until the release of the sequel The Best Man Holiday, where we find a different dynamic between the crew. Lance and Harper aren’t as close as they once were, a few of the members have developed new relationships, and Mia – Lance’s wife – has been stricken with a terminal illness. Throughout the film, the bunch learns the truly important things in life, and that you can’t take anything – or anyone – for granted.
Alongside Diggs and Chestnut, The Best Man franchise stars Nia Long, Sanaa Lathan, Terrence Howard, Regina Hall, Harold Perrineau, and Melissa De Sousa; all of whom went on to cultivate amazing careers in the entertainment industry.
To celebrate the premiere of Peacock’s The Best Man: The Final Chapters, let’s take a look at the film’s cast then and now.
An up-and-coming author whose debut novel, Unfinished Business, opens up old and unknown wounds that would affect many of his relationships forever.
Diggs has crafted a long career as a leading man in Black cinema. He has starred in Brown Sugar, Chicago, and Best Man Holiday. He now plays Coach Billy Baker in All-American, the hit series on The CW.
The strong, motivated and sassy business woman, who has an unfinished connection with Harper from college.
Long has become a staple Black culture. After starring in classics like Boyz N The Hood, Friday, and Love Jones, this actress created memorable moments for audiences worldwide. She also appeared in music videos for Dr. Dre, Ashanti, and Kanye West, as well winning an NAACP Image Award in 2004 and 2005 for her performance in Third Watch.
The star running back of the New York Giants and Mia’s husband-to-be. Learns of a deep dark secret that threatens the future of his marriage.
After appearing in 1999’s The Best Man, Chestnut starred in the classic Two Can Play That Game just two years later. He also had a recurring role in Legends, and was the leading man for Rosewood.
Harper’s girlfriend, who eventually becomes his wife and mother of his children.
Outside of establishing a stellar career in television and film, Lathan had her hand in animation as well. This entertainer starred in Alien vs. Predator, The Family That Preys, and Out of Time, alongside Denzel Washington. She also has been the voice of Donna Tubbs in the Family Guy franchise since 2009.
The hilarious and free-spirited Quentin is talented but unfocused. He develops a relationship with Shelby and becomes a successful brand manager.
Howard has maintained a highly successful career as an actor both in film and television. After The Best Man, he had roles in Crash, Ray, Iron Man, and was also nominated for an Oscar in 2005 for his performance as DJay in Hustle & Flow. From 2015 – 2020, he was the main character in Fox’s Empire.
Former girlfriend of Murch, the domineering Shelby goes on hit The Real Housewives TV show franchise, and is now a prominent reality television star. She is also married to Quentin.
Melissa De Sousa
De Sousa can be seen in several of your favorite TV shows, including Single Ladies, Black Lightning, and Our Kind of People.
Julian “Murch” Murchison
The lighthearted and timid friend of the bunch, who eventually falls in love with Candy.
Perrineau is an award-winning actor who rose to fame as Augustus Hill in the HBO show Oz. After appearing as Link in The Matrix series, he also became a main character in the hit show Lost. He will reprise his role as Murch in The Best Man: The Final Chapters.
“Candy” is a former exotic dancer who meets Murch at Lance’s bachelor party. The two cultivate a relationship and eventually get married.
The Best Man was Hall’s first on-screen appearance, and she hasn’t looked back since. This versatile actress appeared in the cult classic Paid In Full, as well as the Scary Movie franchise. Earlier this year, she co-hosted the 94th Annual Academy Awards
The God-fearing Mia was the husband of Lance, and had a one-night stand with Harper while they were in college. She unfortunately passed away in 2013’s Best Man Holiday.
Since the release of The Best Man, Calhoun had roles in Love & Basketball, Grey’s Anatomy, and 2017’s The New Edition Story.