(AP) — Notable reaction to the death of “Boyz N the Hood” filmmaker John Singleton:
“Thank you John for being my friend, brother and mentor for 30 years. For believing in me when I was unsure of myself. Your passion for telling our stories from our point of view was more than an obsession, it was your mission in life. Your love for the black experience was contagious and I would never be the man I am without knowing you. On April 29, 1992 you were on TV warning the world what was to come. I’m sad today, cause on this April 29th who will warn the world what’s to come. I love you and I miss you already brother.” — “Boyz N the Hood” star and rapper Ice Cube, in a statement.
“You gave me my first movie role, my first Oscar nomination and so much more. Thank you for all you have given to the world through your work and all you have done for Black culture, women and young filmmakers. I will miss you John. Keeping your family in my prayers.” — “Poetic Justice” star, pop star Janet Jackson, via Instagram.
“With His Passion, His Heart, The Way He Talked About His Love For Cinema And Black Folks I Could See John Would Make It Happen. And He Did. From Day One.” — Spike Lee, via Instagram.
“So sad to hear about John. I met him way before he did ‘Boys in the Hood.’ He had more drive then anybody I’ve ever met.” — Chris Rock, via Instagram.
“Thank you for all that you gave to the world the movies the messages the opportunities to so many people like myself to grace the big screen in a major role with major black actors you were and will allways be black excellence love you for life and beyond.” — Snoop Dogg, via Instagram.
“Rest In Power, my friend. One of the greatest to ever do it. Thank you GOD for blessing us with this gift better known as John Singleton.” — “Boyz N the Hood” actor Regina King, via Instagram.
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Rest In Power, my friend. One of the greatest to ever do it. Thank you GOD for blessing us with this gift better known as John Singleton. Having trouble finding enough words to share just what you mean to me. Will always love you John! Your spirit will forever shine bright💜
“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! — “Shaft” star Samuel L. Jackson, via Twitter.
“RIP John Singleton. So sad to hear. John was a brave artist and a true inspiration. His vision changed everything.” — Jordan Peele via Twitter.
“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, via Twitter.
“The youngest-ever Best Director nominee and an inspiration to us all. John Singleton, you will be greatly missed.” — Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, via Twitter.
“This thing we call the cinema is over 100 years old and like most things it was a white man’s world. Women weren’t allowed into it. African Americans weren’t allowed into it, other people of color. The working class, we don’t go to film school, but people like John Singleton did. They forced their way in so that millions of Americans would have a voice, and he is a pioneer and one of the people responsible for that.” — Filmmaker Michael Moore, at the 50th anniversary gala at Film at Lincoln Center.
“John is admired for putting a lot of people of color to work throughout his career. Our prayers are with his children and family members. He will be sorely missed.” — Magic Johnson, via Twitter.
“The magnitude and world-wide impact that his ground-breaking film would have for society cannot be measured. Helping to bring awareness of what it takes to come to maturity as a black male in the ‘Hood, or die trying…” — “Boyz N the Hood” actor Morris Chestnut, via Instagram.
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This is where it all started. The Genesis – The Genius – The Genre Maker/Star Maker (Taraji P. Henson, Ice Cube, Tyrese Gibson, Lawrence Fishburne, Regina King,Nia Long, Angela Basset, Cuba Gooding, Jr. – in no particular order as these are all great actors/actresses). John Singleton gave me a chance. When I left the audition for "Boyz N' The Hood" as he shook my hand, he gave me a stronger grip than normal and looked me in the eye. I felt he was basically giving me a signal that I had the job without telling me. From there, there was no comprehension of the massive chain of events that was about to follow. People from all over the world literally tell me how they’re affected by Boyz ‘N The Hood. The magnitude and world-wide impact that his ground-breaking film would have for society cannot be measured. Helping to bring awareness of what it takes to come to maturity as a black male in the 'Hood, or die trying… Helping to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges faced. Dealing with challenges and adversity in life and in general. From that lesson, for anyone who watches Boyz N’ The Hood, we are able to learn a little more about ourselves and each other. Hopefully, we are able to grow, evolve and gain a deeper love and understanding of our humanity. John Singleton, thank you for your vision. Thank you for holding my hand a little stronger. Thank you for connecting with me and thank you for connecting me to history. Thank you for connecting and transcending generations, nationalities, nations, races, communities, societies. Thank you, John Singleton, for connecting us all. #RIP #JohnSingleton
“Today my heart breaks. #JohnSingleton was an innovator – he came to us with so much drive and clear creative vision in a time when people of color didn’t have the visibility in cinema that we do today. He is and will always remain a beacon of light in our community, and today we celebrate the incredible legacy he left behind and the cultural contributions he has made. Rest well my friend, we’ve lost one of the good guys.” — Halle Berry, via Instagram.
“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.” — John Landgraf, chairman of FX Networks and FX Productions, in a statement.
“Cruel. Not what I want to say right now. But certainly how I feel. Cruel. Just… so cruel.” — Barry Jenkins, via Twitter.
“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” — Ava DuVernay, via Twitter.
“This one cuts deep. You’ll never be forgotten. Cause your work will live on.” — Writer-producer Lena Waithe, via Twitter.
“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, via Twitter.
“I made one of the best decisions of my career in buying the script of Boyz n the Hood and hiring John to direct it. Since then, I have been honored to call him my friend. Over the years he has sent me first drafts of his scripts, from which I always learned something new about our place as Americans, and as human beings. I will miss his friendship, our conversations, and his contributions to our industry.” — Frank Price, former chairman of Columbia Pictures and current chairman of the USC School of Cinematic Arts Board of Advisers, in a statement.
“There was a time when I was struggling to pay my bills in film school and not sure this town was for me. And one day, not long after Boyz N The Hood exploded on the scene, my phone rang. It was John Singleton. John did not know me at all. But someone at USC had told him I was talented and he was kindly calling to offer me some words of encouragement. He told me to keep writing. I never forgot it. Praying for him and for his family now.” — Shonda Rhimes, via Instagram.
“#johnsingleton Needless to say we go way, way back… There are no words to convey the absolute loss and sadness I feel right now. John was there for his fellow filmmakers, always. All we had to do was look up and he would be there smiling and applauding our efforts.” — Filmmaker Julie Dash, via Twitter.
“He was early in the game and he broke through and because of him a lot of good stuff is happening today.” — Filmmaker John Waters, at the 50th anniversary gala of Film at Lincoln Center.
“It’s very tragic. I feel a big loss. Somebody innovative, incredible energy. … We need our energized people, filmmakers, artists, and he was an important one.” — Filmmaker Jim Jarmusch, at the 50th anniversary gala of Film at Lincoln Center.
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