On this day in 1992, John Singleton became the first African American to be nominated for an Academy Award for his role as director of the film, Boyz n the Hood.

According to his Wikipedia page, at 24 he was the youngest person ever nominated for Best Director and the first African-American to be nominated for the award. The film has since attained classic status and, in 2002, the United StatesLibrary Congress  deemed the film “culturally significant” and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry.

According to Rotten Tomatoes, the film starring Cuba Gooding Jr and Larry Fishburne introduced mainstream society to South Central Los Angeles. The film centers around Tre, who was sent to live with his father, Furious Styles in the tough South Central Los Angeles neighborhood.

See Trailer Here

Although his hard-nosed father instills proper values and respect in him, and his devout girlfriend Brandi teaches him about faith, Tre’s friends Doughboy (Ice Cube) and Ricky (Morris Chestnut) don’t have the same kind of support and are drawn into the neighborhood’s booming drug and gang culture, with increasingly tragic results.

Singleton went on to direct or produce films that most know and love. Poetic Justice, Baby Boy, 2 Fast 2 Furious, Hustle & Flow, Poetic Justice lite the 90s and early to mid-200s. We’d be remiss if we also didn’t acknowledge Singleton’s directorial role in the hit Fox that EVERYBODY’s talking about. Empire. 

#Saltute to you, John Singleton.