The many actors and creative types that John Singleton worked with in his nearly three decades in the entertainment industry, writing and directing game-changing movies, such as Boyz n the Hood and Poetic Justice, were devastated Monday to hear of his death at 51.
People who had worked with the Oscar-nominated director — both the first African-American and the youngest person ever to be nominated in the category — saluted him with heartfelt statements. They remembered him as a man who told stories that weren’t being told elsewhere and was always willing to help a colleague.
Here are some of the tributes they shared:
🙏🏽— Tyra Banks (@tyrabanks) April 30, 2019
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!— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) April 29, 2019
There aren’t many of us out here doing this. It’s a small tribe in the grand scheme of things. He was a giant among us. Kind. Committed. And immensely talented. His films broke ground. His films mattered. He will be missed. And long remembered. Thank you, John. #RunIntoHisArms pic.twitter.com/wKfOaCGFuA— Ava DuVernay (@ava) April 29, 2019
"I learned that no one was going to write the films I wanted to do except for me." - John Singleton— W. Kamau Bell (@wkamaubell) April 29, 2019
If you weren't there in the 90's you've no idea how revolutionary Boyz n the Hood was. It kicked open a door that Black artists are still walking through. https://t.co/1AwlJRzjHy
One of the most important things John taught me was to never lose the spark, the child like enthusiasm that seeing a film elicits. You want to make films? Watxh film. All the time. And write. Especially when you don’t feel like it.— Cheo Hodari Coker (@cheo_coker) April 29, 2019
RIP John Singleton. So sad to hear. John was a brave artist and a true inspiration. His vision changed everything.— Jordan Peele (@JordanPeele) April 29, 2019
The best life is when we leave a trail. We leave something on this earth bigger than us. John Singleton....you inspired a generation of Artists. We will shoulder on....'May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest". RIP— Viola Davis (@violadavis) April 29, 2019
John Singleton has died. This is a big loss to the world at large. So smart, insatiably curious, and a cool dude all around. He took me to lunch twice in the last few years and was truly a gentleman. Thank you for your contributions and I’m so sorry your life was cut short— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan) April 29, 2019
Rest up John Singleton. We never met, but Remember The Time literally changed my life. Thank you so much. God Bless you— Chance The Rapper Owbum 📅 (@chancetherapper) April 29, 2019
John Singleton was a great director and storyteller who was never afraid to show African Americans in complex, multidimensional roles. We hope that his legacy will inspire a new generation of filmmakers to turn a positive and progressive lens toward minorities in this country. pic.twitter.com/xoCeZClJW6— NAACP (@NAACP) April 29, 2019
The youngest-ever Best Director nominee and an inspiration to us all. John Singleton, you will be greatly missed. pic.twitter.com/cMWrDz9633— The Academy (@TheAcademy) April 29, 2019
John Landgraf, the chairman of FX Networks and FX Productions, the home of the current Singleton-created show Snowfall, gave the following statement:
“On behalf of my colleagues at FX, we are heartbroken about the passing of our friend and partner, John Singleton. For almost three decades, John was one of the most important filmmakers in this business, dating back to his masterwork, Boyz n the Hood. Over the course of his illustrious career, John remained steadfast in telling stories that illuminate the daily challenges faced by African Americans, particularly those living in the inner city.
“We are honored and fortunate to have worked with John on The People v. O.J. Simpson and the drama series Snowfall, which he co-created and on which he is an executive producer and director. I know that the cast and crew loved John as much as we did, and that they are heartbroken over this news. Today we lost an incredibly talented artist, leader, activist, partner and friend — far too soon. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this difficult time.”
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