Boom for Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat gives an intimate view of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s life pre-fame in the period 1979-1981, and how New York City, the times, the people and the movements surrounding him formed the artist he became. Using never-before-seen works, writings and photographs, director Sara Driver (Sleepwalk, When Pigs Fly) worked closely and collaboratively with her friends and other artists who emerged from that scene: Nan Goldin, Jim Jarmusch, James Nares, Fred Brathwaite (aka Fab 5 Freddy), Lee Quiñones, Luc Sante and many others. Providing their thoughts, period film footage, music, images and anecdotes of their young friend, they helped visually tell the story of Basquiat's downtown NYC—pre AIDS, President Reagan, the real estate and art boom—when the urge to create was driven by more than money and ambition. The definition of fame, success and power were very different than today; to be a penniless but published poet was the height of success, until everything changed in the early 1980s. This is New York City’s story before that change.