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Boyz N the Hood director John Singleton dies age 51

Singleton (51) directed Boyz n the Hood as a 22-year-old fresh out of film school.

File photo of John Singleton at the 71st annual DGA Awards in Los Angeles.
File photo of John Singleton at the 71st annual DGA Awards in Los Angeles.
Image: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File

JOHN SINGLETON, THE director of the groundbreaking 1991 film Boyz n the Hood, has died, according to a statement from his family. 

Singleton (51) directed Boyz n the Hood as a 22-year-old fresh out of film school. The flick described youth and violence in South Central Los Angeles, the bleak, gang-ridden neighborhood of his childhood.

The movie won Singleton Oscar nominations as best director and best original screenplay, making him the youngest writer-director and first African American to achieve the distinction.

He went on to a prolific career as a film director, with credits that included the remake of Shaft (2000) and 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003).

His work on television included shows such as Billions, The People v OJ Simpson: American Crime Story and Empire.

“It is with heavy hearts we announce that our beloved son, father and friend, John Daniel Singleton will be taken off of life support today,” his family said earlier. 

This was an agonising decision, one that our family made, over a number of days, with the careful counsel of John’s doctors.

The family provided few details about Singleton’s medical crisis, but said he has long suffered from hypertension.

US media reports said he was hospitalised 17 April after suffering a stroke.

Starring the rapper Ice Cube and Cuba Gooding Jr, Boyz n the Hood was a breakthrough success that won special honors at Cannes and in 2002 was selected for preservation by the Library of Congress as a “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” film.

The film, which also featured rappers 2 Live Crew and Too $hort, helped to popularise the genre.

“Nobody was making movies about what we were going through in Los Angeles,” Singleton said before, describing his inspiration behind the feature.

With reporting from AP

- © AFP 2019

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