Trailblazing Director John Singleton Has Passed

April 29, 2019
John Singleton

In 1992, John Singleton was the first black person nominated for an Oscar for Best Director (1991’s Boyz n The Hood). He was also the youngest person ever nominated for best director, at just 24 years of age. The groundbreaking film astonished viewers and critics alike, and the soundtrack became as iconic as the movie itself, especially the “Theme From Boyz N The Hood” by Wave artist Stanley Clarke. We learned earlier this afternoon that John Singleton has passed after being taken off life support following a stroke. He was just 51.

Early in his career, Singleton also directed Michael Jackson’s music video for the song “Remember The Time,” which he called “a phenomenal experience.” He also directed a movie starring Janet Jackson and Tupac Shakur which blew people’s minds—“Poetic Justice.” In an interview that coincided with the 25th-anniversary re-release of Boyz N The Hood, Singleton said he was “living this film before I ever thought about making it.”

Needless to say, social media is in a flurry to pay him honor. Janelle Monae just tweeted: “I am so thankful as a kid that my parents took me to the theaters to see your films (Boys n the Hood , Higher Learning , Poetic Justice , Rosewood , Baby Boy to name a few. You captured our culture so damn well & taught the world about the MANY complex black experiences.” From Samuel L. Jackson: “Mourning the loss of a collaborator & True Friend, John Singleton. He blazed the trail for many young film makers, always remaining true to who he was & where he came from! RIP Brother. Gone Way Too Soon!”

Earth was blessed to have you, John Singleton. Rest in Peace. May your passing be as beautiful as the art you brought to this world.


Happy Birthday Sam Jackson! The baddest muthafuckin actor on the planet. Had a great time with old friends and family last night celebrating Sammy’s Birthday.

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