"The so-called liberals that are in Hollywood now are not as good as their parents or ancestors..."
Bradford Thomas |
In an interview for the “Hollywood Masters Interview Series” last week, Oscar-nominated director John Singleton (Boyz n the Hood, 2 Fast 2 Furious) called out the “so-called liberals” at the major studios, including black executives, for shutting out African-American voices.
Transcript via The Hollywood Reporter:
They ain't letting the black people tell the stories. [Studio executives say] “We're going to take your stories but, you know what? You're going to go starve over here and we're not going to let you get a job.” The so-called liberals that are in Hollywood now are not as good as their parents or ancestors. They feel that they're not racist. They grew up with hip-hop, so [they] can't be racist. “I like Jay Z, but that don't mean I got to give you a job."
Singleton decried the type-casting of African Americans by the studios and the “homogenized” nature of black films, arguing that studios were hindering African-American filmmakers from "moving the bar forward creatively."
They want black people [to be] what they want them to be. And nobody is man enough to go and say that. They want black people to be who they want them to be, as opposed to what they are. They black films now—so-called black films now—they’re great. They’re great films. But they’re just product. They’re not moving the bar forward creatively... When you try to make it homogenized, when you try to make it appeal to everybody, then you don’t have anything that’s special.
Singleton specifically highlighted the role of African-American executives at the studios, stating that fear often holds them back from promoting material by black filmmakers:
You've got a lot of black executives at the studio who are afraid to give their opinion about what black culture is. There's a whole lot of black people who work in studios that don't need to be there, because they won't — if I give them the best thing possible, they're scared to give it to somebody [higher up], because they'd be like, “Woah!”
Singleton’s criticism of the limited number of voices allowed by the studios echoes the findings of a recent study of the role of women in Hollywood, which found that out of the 100 grossing films last year, women played only a third of all speaking roles and starred in only 15% of them. http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/john-singleton-so-called-liberals-hollywood-shutting-out-black-voices