Akeelah and the Bee is a 2006 American drama film written and directed by Doug Atchison. It tells the story of Akeelah Anderson (Keke Palmer), an 11-year-old girl who participates in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Akeelah lives with her widowed mother Tanya, her older sister Kiana, her older brothers Devon and Terrence, and her infant niece. Her principal, Mr. Welch, suggests that she sign up for the Crenshaw Schoolwide Spelling Bee, which she initially refuses.
Soon after, Dr. Joshua Larabee, a visiting English professor, tests Akeelah and decides that she is good enough to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee, but nevertheless initially declines to coach her because she is rude to him. As a result, Akeelah studies on her own to prepare for the district spelling bee.
Akeelah also meets and befriends Javier Mendez, a 12-year-old Mexican American boy and fellow speller. Javier invites her to join the spelling club at his Woodland Hills middle school. At Woodland Hills, Akeelah meets Dylan Chiu, a Chinese American boy who had won second place at the past two national spelling bees. Be it as it may, Dylan, Javier and Akeelah advance to the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
On the D-day, the spellings were mind-blowing. After all the other competitors were eliminated, only Dylan and Akeelah remain. The two then proceed to spell every Word listed by the judges until the two are declared co-champions.
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