Clerks is a 1994 American independent black comedy film written, directed, and co-produced by Kevin Smith. Starring Brian O'Halloran as Dante Hicks and Jeff Anderson as Randal Graves, it presents a day in the lives of two store clerks and their acquaintances. Shot entirely in black-and-white, Clerks is the first of Smith's View Askewniverse films, and introduces several recurring characters, notably Jay and Silent Bob, the latter played by Smith himself. The structure of the movie contains nine scene breaks, signifying the nine rings of hell as in Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy, from which the main character, Dante, gets his name.
Clerks was shot for $27,575 in the convenience and video stores where director Kevin Smith worked in real life. Upon its theatrical release, the film grossed over $3 million in theaters, launching Smith's career.