The hip hop dance movie genre has seen a rise in popularity in the last few decades. This cinematic form uses dance to tell a story and display choreography. Step Up 2: The Streets, follows the hip hop dance movie tradition by bridging acting and dance to communicate a story. Step Up 2 is the follow up to the 2006 release of Step Up. The film follows two young people attending a dance school in Maryland on their quest to become respected street hip hop dancers and compete in an illegal street dance competition. Along the way they face many trials and tribulations, especially from family, friends and opponents of the street dance community. Andie and Chase, the main characters in the film, find themselves at a crossroads as they must decide between a life of formal dance training and one of the taboo life of a street dancer.
As with all dance movies, the choreography is a very important part of the story. Choreographers Jamal Sims and Dave Scott used many classical musical influences from movies and television. They took these influences and infused a heavy mix of hip hop and dance music tracks. They wanted to improve on the major critique of the first film by not using the same moves over and over throughout. The desired result was choreography that pays attention to formal technique but that also stays true to the artistic style of hip hop dance. Both choreographers have much experience in this genre having worked on many other popular dance films.
Director Jon Chu, who is known for his dance films, wanted to continue in the same vein as the original film. Chu wanted to keep the same story line, but deepen the plot and improve on the choreography. Patrick Wachsberger and Erik Feik produced the film in conjunction with the director of the first installment.
The cult following of the first Step Up movie left great anticipation for the second. Having won a Teen Choice Award for The Best Dramatic Film of the Year, the film earned a total revenue of over $150,000,000 million dollars, surpassing the original. This earned it a substantial place in the realm of movie land. Although the film has faced its share of negative reviews from the movie critics, the fan support has been strong enough for the creators of the franchise to embark on a new story. Step Up 2 was followed by Step Up 3d that was released in 2010.