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John Singleton

Director John Singleton is coming out in support of Sony Pictures co-chairwoman Amy Pascal and Hollywood mega producer Scott Rudin, in the wake of their controversial e-mails being released by Sony hackers. Those pesky e-mails aren’t racists one bit says Singleton. He knows both Pascal and Rudin all too well since he’s hung out with them both dishing their love affair for movies while chowing down on soul food.  Singleton penned an essay with The Hollywood Reporter where he gives his accounts of dealings with Pascal and Rudin.

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According to Singleton, Rudin wanted to meet with him after receiving tracking information Boyz In The Hood would beat Rudin’s, Regarding Henry at the box office. There, Singleton claims the two bonded over their love for film and the theater where they discussed working together in the future.  Singleton stated:

The pictures opening that weekend were Regarding Henry and my first film, Boyz N the Hood. Rudin and I had a short lunch, where I learned we shared a mutual love of theater and film and nothing else. He left promising we’d find a project together. How prophetic. Years later, he bailed me out of a $2 million development debt on Shaft at MGM. Scott took it to Paramount, where we made a huge hit.

Pascal and Rudin’s e-mails have come under fire after the two discussed what to ask President Barack Obama at a donor breakfast event. Rudin wondered if Obama would be interested in investing in films, and questions what movies he was interested in.

Would he like to finance some movies.” Pascal replied, “I doubt it. Should I ask him if he liked DJANGO?” Rudin responded: “12 YEARS.” Pascal quickly continued down the path of guessing Obama preferred movies by or starring African Americans. “Or the butler. Or think like a man? [sic]”

Singleton also discusses his dealings with Pscal during her previous tenure at Turner Pictures. Singleton claims he asked her to hire Damon Lee, a black development executive. As Singleton tells the tale, Pascal scooped him up without meeting with Lee while over lunch at a soul food restaurant (of course!). Singleton remarked:

When Amy Pascal took the position of production president at Turner Pictures, one of her few jobs outside Sony, I called her and requested that she hire a black development executive. Pascal hired Damon Lee, sight unseen, on the spot. It wasn’t her first black hire: Her protege, Stephanie Allain, had found my script for Boyz. Amy hashed out my deal over soul food at Aunt Kizzy’s Back Porch. I’ll always remember her saying, “Honey, if we make you a star, we want to keep you.” I signed a three-picture deal through her coaxing.

So, because Rudin shopped Singleton’s Shaft to another studio so HE (Rudin) can make money, and Pascal took him to a soul food joint to iron out a business deal, their e-mails weren’t racially offensive? Really, John? That must’ve been some dish at Aun’t Kizzy’s. Both Pascal and Rudin have given a quasi apologies for the e-mails since they became public.


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John Singleton On Sony Execs E-mails “They Aren’t Racist”  was originally published on