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RIP John Singleton: Five of his greatest movies that shifted culture forever

After being in a coma for over a week, the family of director John Singleton has confirmed that Singleton has died at the age of 51.

On April 20, Singleton’s estate revealed that the Oscar-nominated director was placed on life support. This happened while he was at Cedars-Sinai hospital in LA, following a stroke.

At the time, Sheila Ward, who is a mother to the late director, requested a judge to appoint her temporary conservatorship because Singleton was “unable to properly provide for his personal needs for physical health, food, clothing, or shelter.”

Today, the director’s family confirmed the decision to pull the plug to Deadline.

“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,” a spokesperson for the family said in a statement.

“This was an agonizing decision, one that our family made, over a number of days, with the careful counsel of John’s doctors… We are grateful to his fans, friends and colleagues for the outpour of love and prayers during this incredibly difficult time. We want to thank all the doctors at Cedars Sinai for the impeccable care he received.”

Singleton was suffering from hypertension due to high blood pressure throughout his life. This was one of the leading causes of his stroke. His family made sure that his fans and people in general who are hearing about his death are, too, enlightened and informed.

The statement continued, “More than 40 percent of African-American men and women have high blood pressure, which also develops earlier in life and is usually more severe. His family wants to share the message with all to please recognize the symptoms by going to”

Now, you may have never heard of John Singleton being that he lived behind the camera as a director. Still, his work influenced us all. In fact, some say he singlehandedly brought the black perspective to the big screen.

From Tupac, Ice Cube, and Snoop Dogg, to Taraji P. Henson, Nia Long and Janet Jackson, John Singleton was giving roles to Black people in Hollywood when no one else was. Furthermore, he told stories that otherwise had no representation.

His influence on culture — merging hip-hop and Hollywood — still lasts today. The careers Singleton has started birthed new life and brought on more careers. All having spawned from his vision.

There are too many classics of his to list off the top and quantifying them is an impossible task. Here are five movies Singleton directed that changed the landscape of culture, Hollywood, and Black lives forever.

Boyz N The Hood (1991)

If you remember Ice Cube’s iconic line in the movie Boyz N The Hood, “Either they don’t know, don’t show, or don’t care about what’s going on in the hood,” then you know John Singleton.

Poetic Justice (1993)

Tupac and Janet Jackson on the same screen at the peak of their careers — who else could have don this? Where else can you go for this nostalgic content?

Hustle & Flow (2005)

From Terrance Howard’s classic southern drawl to how Three 6 Mafia became the first hip-hop group to win an Oscar, it’s safe to say John Sington was a trailblazer.

Baby Boy (2001)

This movie birthed the careers of some of your favs. Both Tyrese Gibson and Taraji P. Henson gave a lights out performance. BET still plays this movie three times a day for the youth that missed it.

Shaft (2001)

Has Samuel L. Jackson ever been presented as more bad-ass? Yes, John Singleton gave life to this iconic character as well.

See, you know John Singleton, whether you actually knew him or not — and that’s the mark of a legend.

For a Black director to not only get on, but bring on as many that looked like him in the process, and to dedicate his craft to tell their stories is remarkable.

Clap for him. Rest in power.