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What Black Director Would YOU Put On A Magazine Cover?

What Black Director Would YOU Put On A Magazine Cover?

In case you haven’t heard (and as you can see below) Tyler Perry is the cover story for the upcoming August 2011 issue of Ebony magazine. WHAT AGAIN??? That makes it the 546th time he’s made the cover. That’s only beaten by the 634 times he’s been on the cover of Essence.

O.K. I get it and so do you. Let’s face facts. Name me another black director who can sell magazine copies. Love him or hate him (that seems to be in equal proportion) it’s a business. (Personally I’m still waiting for a Lexington Steele cover story and I want to be the one to do it)

No doubt that Ebony issue will be bought up by all those good, church going black women hoping one day they’ll find a good, God fearing, Christian man who’s right with the Lord and who doesn’t smoke, drink and do drugs with no vices (at least that haven’t been discovered yet by Bossip or the National Enquirer) like Perry. Good luck

But there has to be another black director out there somewhere worthy of their own cover story on a major magazine? Who would you pick disregarding if would sell copies or not?

If I had to pick one I would choose Antoine Fuqua (the photo above). He’s made some really good films and hasn’t gotten anywhere near the sort of notority I think he deserves. I would call the article “The MAN’S MAN director Antoine Fuqua”

Who would be your choice or choices?

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movie mania

member of our own community when filmmaking is an industry in which it’s so hard to remain relevant? Who CARES if he’s gay or not? It’s about the work. It’s equally about the art and commercial viability. And if you don’t agree that he excels

E Forde

I’m a little surprised no ones picked John Singleton especially as he has a new film out in a month or so in Abduction.

I’d also feature Dee Rees who managed to bag a major distribution deal for a film about Black lesbians in Pariah. However, I’m guessing she’d be to much for such a conservative publication like Ebony to put on the cover.


@ Kat, that’s what I’m talking about. I’ve been reading this blog for quite some time and you are the first person (if my memory serves me well) that has come up in here and laid it out like you did. You stood on yours!! Now, I don’t know you but I like that in you.

Your comment(s) reminded me of what I heard another film director/writer say. He said something like “those that have struggled the most, have the best and most interesting stories to tell. The rest are fake-shifters. Some of whom are pretentious wannabees, writing contrived stories as they sit around eating their curds and whey, and wondering why nobody wants to “see”/hear their stories. Tyler Perry has his thumb on human emotions because he has been there, in many ways! What leaves the heart will find another’s.


“Put Antoine on the cover with that doo rag, no shirt, and tight ass pants and I’ll buy that magazine. Eventually, I might read the article”

Although you jest (solely about the cover, not the part about you sitting it on your coffee table :-)) I believe you might be onto something. See, I’m thinking if ol’Antoine was on the cover wearing a business suit and no doo-rag, it would be one of the lowest selling editions of all time. I mean, who in the hell is Antoine Fuqua? But put a brotha on the cover with half his loins hanging out and WAM-O, it’s on baby. Caption: “Would You Let This Man Direct You”

Now I wouldn’t buy it but I am sure a few more sistahs like you and a number of white chicks would rush to get an autographed copies.


“Man, you’re the blackest looking white dude I’ve ever seen, lol! Scary part is you’d fit right in Memphis today with that getup”

*LOL* Yeah, I had to put something on Sonofbaldwin’s mind. And no way. I’ve been to some of the most dangerous black cities(neighborhoods) in America, ie, Dallas, Detroit, Philly, Chicago, EAST ST LOUIS Ill(wow!), Harlem, L.A, Cleveland, Ezzard Charles Street in Cinn Oh, the jungles of Thailand, and got ripped off in Dayton Oh, but those negroes in Memphis are not for the weak of heart. I mean, I ain’t no punk, but I chose my fights very wisely (these days). Shiiiit, I might fit in (with my baby blue patent leather shoes – that you didn’t see *smile*) but Memphis, no way baaaaaby. But Chattanoogo, maybe baaabie *wink*


The cover of Ebony featuring Tyler Perry had nothing to do about black directors in hollywood. It’s about wealth and he’s created wealth from humbled beginnings, all with his faith planted soley in Christ. What you do for Christ will last. The heart Mr. Perry has to tell the kinds of stories he does is all because of his past (hurt/pains and childhood trauma) so maybe in his lane as actor/director, those are the kinds of stories he’s been born to tell, while Lee, Daniels, Singleton and many other black directors tell their stories. It always seems that when someone tries to do something positive, we put it down. So, everybody don’t get what he does, it doesn’t mean it’s not good. I know the other black directors do good movies but they don’t draw me to the theater like Mr. Perry has. Of course, it’s all about preference. I prefer what TP does and I go support it. I don’t criticize or disrespect the others if I don’t want to see what they have done. I just don’t support it w/my money but I do wish them all well. Hollywood needs to see black people in film/television all telling different stories. Just like any other race, we are not all bad people, poor and uneducated. Just as our skin color is diverse, so is our journey through life. Each of the directors, male/female, spoken of has a different story to tell and can do it in their own way. TP is walking under God’s favor right now and nothing no one says will stop it until God says otherwise. He’s annointed to tell his stories the way he sees them as is the others. The Ebony story is a good issue for all to read. It spoke about many other black wealthy, successful business people. I thought it all very inspiring and that is what we need to do, live our lives to inspire the good in others. Continued success TP!


Ebony is just as mainstream for black folks as People magazine is for white folks.

The reason you don’t see any other black directors on the cover is the same reason why you won’t ever see Del Toro or even Brett Ratner on the cover of People.

They aren’t well-known enough to the general mainstream audience. It seems counter-productive, but only we think in terms of who is or isn’t “uplifting the race” when it’s really just about cyclical publicity.

You’re not going to see ANYONE on the cover of Ebony unless they are well-known to black mainstream audiences. ….And it’s difficult to get black mainstream audiences attention unless you’re on the cover of Ebony.

It’s catch 22 Tyler Perry managed to overcome and I’m sure others will too.

Evelyn Coleman

I would be Fuqua ALL THE WAY. Best films ever, my personal favorite The Shooter…. I have seen that movie at least 50 times… I LOVE IT! I wouldn’t care what he had ON his head it’s what is in it that works for me. LOVE HIM!!!!!


There’s nothing wrong with Antoine’s doo rag. What do you think Tyler Perry wears…. Stop it. Put Antoine on the cover with that doo rag, no shirt, and tight ass pants and I’ll buy that magazine. Eventually, I might read the article.

Seriously though, does anyone know of a black female documentarian who’s one to watch? If magazine sells aren’t a factor I’d like to see someone like that on the cover.

“Hey, how did I look in that silk suit, tinted glasses and afro-ed Jeri Curl?”

Man, you’re the blackest looking white dude I’ve ever seen, lol! Scary part is you’d fit right in Memphis today with that getup.

Trenisha Fabre

Antoine Fuqua should not be on the cover of any magazine or anywhere else with doo-rag on his head!!!!


Is there another Lexington Steele all I could find was Porn star/Director. So is that sarcastic humor

The problem is black entrepreneurs are not coming together as collective to challenge the established order in Hollywood. Instead their waiting for this so-called Post Racial society to give them the chance. In reality the new establish order in Hollywood just like the old one doesn’t feel like letting new people in.

I don’t think that time is coming. Look at all Big Dumb Blockbuster making million. As long crappy Blockbuster are in demand the new establish order won’t be taking risks on minorities in Hollywood.

Look at last TV season NBC Undercovers and Outsourced. Every new pilot had all minorities in secondary roles.


Excuse us y’all, while I holla at my sistah from Tenn. Yeah, I know, Black Bonnie and Brown Clyde highjacking another post… sue us.

JMac, I have pulled the plug. I just rotate my posts from the last 2 years.

I sometimes link my spot so that everyone (that cares to)can see the face and feel the black man behind my madness. You know JMac, I have to practice what I preach, so I can’t hide behind a mystical moniker and then pretend to be something I am not. In my heartfelt opinion, if everyone did the same, this would be a wonderful place. No lies, no secrets, little drama.

Hey, how did I look in that silk suit, tinted glasses and afro-ed Jeri Curl? *LOL*

And, “Y’all know the only other black directors the public knows about on the same level as TP are Spike and John Singleton – to a lesser extent Hughes, Hudlin, Wayans, and Townsend”

Yep, and John Singleton could be a stretch. Sure, he did Boyz n The Hood in 1991 and Shaft, but in the last 10 years, ol’boy has not been around. Even Tyra Banks has lost his number. And have you seen him lately? If you ever get a chance to see him on an average Wednesday morning, you could mistake him for Bobby Brown :-)


Who would be your choice or choices?

I think a better question would be why put Tyler on the cover and not do a story on OTHER black directors instead of some stupid story about getting rich quick. Or a gold digger story.

Folks need to know who thier black directors are.

Try it at home, other than Spike Lee, a person would be hard pressed to have their neighbor or the common man on the street, name 7 black directors. And if they can, I doubt they can match a face with every name.

Tim Story (Fantastic Four)
Levar Burton
Robert Townsend
Michael Dorn
Avery Brooks
Kevin Hooks (from White Shadow)
Eric Launville ( from St. Elsewhere)
Erick Dickerson
Tim Russ (maybe)
Forrest Whitaker (maybe)
George Gore II
Kim Wayans
Debbie Allen

Of course most of these folks directed stuff that most blacks haven’t seen and some are famous for being onscreen.


@ JustKeepingItReal
Why is it that when Perry gets criticized, it’s always mis-identified by his fans as hating? Is Perry somehow above criticism? Is it possible that not every person of color likes his work? Could it be that some Black folks have higher standards and Perry’s movies just dont make the cut?
Just wondering.

Screen Nation






They’d have to put a lot of them on the cover in one of those big covers…Fuqua, Lemmons, Hughes Brothers, Sanaa Hamri and Gina Price-Bythewood with a compelling tagline. Besides film buffs, very view people would know of them.

Tyler Perry is not only a director, he’s a personality. We know his story, we know he his films, we know the rumors.


“Here we go again, Sergio…okay, yeah, Tyler Perry is not the best director out there nor writer but c’mon with the veiled ‘gay’ digs?! We get it, we get it!”

Tell me about it, Monique. Sergio has this thang going on with the Black Church and those he assumes to be gay. I think he should be on the cover of Rolling Stone. I would call the article “The CHEECH and CHONG who slept with his bong”

I don’t know if people smoke out of bongs anymore, so on the cover, Sergio would be standing outside a large church, wearing one of those pervert trench coats, blunt in hand and a pair of binoculars slung around his neck…. “Sergio M. is on the job, looking for the 50 percent of black gay preachers and Tyler Perry”

Sheez, somebody call the law. :-)


The Hughes Brothers are rarely seen by the film audiences . . . the brothers have created brilliant works unsurpassed by Hollywood and international standards. limitations are standard practice to limit the amount of recognition our brothers receive as well as the sisters to promote future film directors . . . big money dictates to control product and distribution. I look toward a future of equal access to inspire the works and distribution of the talented film makers and replace the odd low talent of film offerings on TV and screen . . . Mundacity at best.


Hey Carey, I see we were posting at the same time.

I thought you were giving your blog a break. It’s hard to stop, isn’t it? :D


Ha! I got my issue on Thursday and I knew someone here would post about it.

I’m with Tamara. I’m surprised no one else said Spike Lee. Y’all know the only other black directors the public knows about on the same level as TP are Spike and John Singleton – to a lesser extent Hughes, Hudlin, Wayans, and Townsend.

You put Spike on the cover flipping off America with a “you thought I was out but I’ve always had my ish together- how ya like me now be-yotches!” smirk on his face and that Ebony edition would sell like hotcakes for female church goers and male heathens alike.

Floyd Webb

Ebony is it’s own culture. Therefore it will promote it’s own particular social agenda. After 50 years seems we would know that. That which we want to see, we have to create. All this bitching and whining ain’t helping.

Power is the ability to DEFINE phenomena and make it act in a desired manner.

We have that power, we just have to start using it for good and not simply bitch moments.


Here we go again, Sergio…okay, yeah, Tyler Perry is not the best director out there nor writer but c’mon with the veiled ‘gay’ digs?! We get it, we get it!

Antoine Fuqua…sure, if he could have his lovely wife share the cover! She’s lovely to look at!

I would agree about Kasi – she would be my pick but let’s face it, they [Ebony] keep to people that are more prolific and whom more people recognize in the mainstream unlike her. Ebony albeit ‘black focused’ has always seemed mainstream to me (at least in my adult years).


Who would be your choice or choices?

That question speaks volumes. From Ebony’s perspective, they’re in the business of selling magazines, so seeking first to understand, I can see why some(most ) of the mentioned directors will never make the cover of their magazine.

It’s safe to say this is a “specialty” blog, consequently I understand the opinions of those who post and comment here, however, as an avid and passionate moviegoer/watcher, who might watch as many as 20 movies in one week, I’ve come to believe the average Joe Schmo cares little and knows little about directors, nor would they recognize their face. Granted they may have heard their names but other than that, it’s not important to them to know who made a particular movie.

Try it at home, other than Spike Lee, a person would be hard pressed to have their neighbor or the common man on the street, name 7 black directors. And if they can, I doubt they can match a face with every name.

I could be going out on a limb and many may disagree because I am basically using myself and those around me (my experiences) as my source of information. Not until Lee Daniels broke with Precious did I “see” his face, or cared what he looked like. When the Hughes Brother made The Book of Eli, I was so pissed with that movie that I had to see what was on their face. I’ve even sat in close proximity to some known white directors (at film festivals) and didn’t know who they were, and didn’t really care.

If Ebony was in the business of promoting every black voice of importance (up and coming, and in every industry/business), I doubt they would stay in business very long. As someone mentioned, Tyler Perry is huge in so many ways.

Heck, I didn’t know what Lady Gaga looked like until I was channel checking and saw her on SNL – last night! I said to myself, “WTH is all the fuss over this thang” . If she was on a cover, I wouldn’t pick it up.

“Who would be your choice?”

That’s an easy question for me to answer… Heck, I would be on the cover!

CareyCarey @


WOW! This blog is hating! Seems to be Anti-Tyler Perry! Anything Tyler Perry does their is always something negative from this blog. Please grow-up! Lets learn to celebrate and congratulate. I’m saying this with LOVE!!


Try a cover with the future / emerging Black filmmakers such as Kirk Shannon-Butts (Blueprint); Berry Jenkins (Medicine for Melancholy; Dee Rees (Pariah); Stacie Hawkins (The Rise and Fall of Miss Thing) — just to name a few.

Or overlooked directors like Julie Dash and Charles Burnett – again, to name a few.

Tyler Perry is a money-maker – not a filmmaker. TP just happens to use film as the vehicle to make his capitalistic dreams come true.


There’s no one else, aside from maybe Spike Lee in a near-future issue that Ebony would put on the cover.

Someone mentioned as of late(r years) this magazine featuring only mainstream coverlings.I agree.

No one else makes the cut.

Fuqua and Gray and Hughes and them might be churning the movies out but most might not know them by face or by name in connection with Training Day, The Italian Job, From Hell, etc.

They don’t stick out as much. Is it because they are not both actor and director?

Fuqua comes close in that regard because he’s plugged himself into scenes of his films, “Bait” being the one I can recall off-hand.

But prolific, instantly recognizable, black, male, film-directors comes down to: Perry (as of late) and Spike (again, in the very near future because of these mainstream flicks he’s got in production, on the scroll, etc.)

The female directors mentioned, I applaud their work, their efforts but none of them, hardly has gotten the really “NATIONWIDE MAGAZINE COVER SHINE” in the vein of an “Ebony” or a “Essence”. At least I don’t recall. Please feel free to do the research and correct me.

For all the hullabaloo surrounding the previously titled (I believe) “42.4%” (a better title imo), “Something New” received, I don’t think Hamri made the cover of Essence/Ebony/etc. Again, correct me if I’m wrong.

And again, again, Perry is more than just a filmmaker. He appeals to lots that has everything to do with Essence. He’s a producer, a playwright, an actor, a director, a victim of abuse, a speaker-outer on abuse, an entrepreneur, one of Oprah’s besties, he’s MADEA, so yeah, this man will continue to land Ebony’s cover, where as Fuqua may cover Movieline or Premiere or God willin’ Vanity Fair’s Hollyweird Director’s issue some day.

I don’t buy magazines much anymore. I peruse and leave that potentially-spent 4/5$ sittin’ on the shelf.

There’s a laundry list of Black directors and actors that should be featured and given front-page shine in ‘our’ publications on regular basis, but aren’t. They SHOULD be. We need to enlighten ‘our’selves as to all of ‘our’ talent out there working.

Until that happens, thank goodiness for Shadow and Act, right? Right.

Donnie Leapheart

I’ve been hearing a lot about this Tyler Perry guy lately. He’s an indie filmmaker, right? I think I may buy the magazine so that I can learn more about him.


We Black folks aren’t supposed to be monolithic, right? Then why is it that both of our mainstream Black publications only highlight this one Black ‘director’? Absolutely Antoine Fuqua should get a cover and so should all of the other Black directors suggested by the other posts. The public needs to know that there are other choices (voices) besides Perry. Actual craftsmen (and women) who take the art seriously and seek to expand our collective boundaries and not continue to serve up cinematic kool-aid.

Anton H. Gill

Your question is a legitimate one. Let’s indeed lift other black filmmakers who are equally capable but who, for one reason or another, don’t enjoy the same visibility and fame as Mr. Perry. But the jabs at his sexuality are unnecessary. Why smear a filmmaker, a member of our own community when filmmaking is an industry in which it’s so hard to remain relevant? Who CARES if he’s gay or not? It’s about the work. It’s equally about the art and commercial viability. And if you don’t agree that he excels at the former, it’s indisputable that he excels at the latter. But that alone is a major accomplishment that CONSISTENTLY sets him apart from others. Let’s dispense with the negativity please.

John M

Sanaa Hamri is model gorgeous for sure;) but as a man I like looking at beautiful women


I agree with you Sergio. Antoine Fuqua would without a doubt be my first pick. That cover with Tyler Perry looks so weird. They went photoshop crazy with it!! I give him props on his confidence though. That man swears he’s fine and he thinks he has the swagger of ten men. Not!!


Kasi Lemmons would be an obvious choice. She’s never gotten her due for the quality films she’s made. Eve’s Bayou, The Caveman’s Valentine, and Talk To Me were all top-notch.


I am about to say something very rare…I agree with you, Sergio. LOL And no, not about the TP innuendoes. But I too think Antoine Fuqua is deserving of a cover and he can share it with his beautiful wife, as Monique suggested. I would also like to see Kasi, Ava and some others on a cover or two. I like blakdiamon’s idea of putting them all on a special edition cover.


The closet doth nockith loudly young Perry.

Ed DuRante

i can’t believe i’m the first one to even mention LEXINGTON STEELE.
everyone’s pretending that they don’t know who he is…


Ava DuVernay. All day long.


Albert Hughes.

Actor Tom Truong

Good Job Tyler Perry


Victoria Mahoney – in order to big up this brilliant black director dedicated to making powerfully creative, intelligent, thought-provoking films.

Charles Burnett- so more people know about the quiet, poetic genius of this director.

Directors like Mahoney and Burnett need all the exposure they can get so they could also raise more money on a grassroots levels to make more films.

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