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Jordan Peele’s Message to Hollywood: Black Folks ‘Tell Good Stories Just Like Anybody Else’

Jordan Peele
In this Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017 photo, Jordan Peele poses for a portrait at the SLS Hotel in Los Angeles. Peele's directorial debut, "Get Out," in theaters Friday, Feb. 24, is one of those rare creations that functions both as a taut psychological thriller and as searing social commentary about racism in the modern era. (Photo by Rich Fury/Invision/AP)

After striking box office gold with his feature film, Get Out, Jordan Peele can just about write his own ticket in Hollywood. The former Key & Peele alum’s directorial debut brought in more than $100 million and garnered rave reviews from film critics and fans alike.

Recently, Peele, who said he has a whole series of horror films about “social demons” in the works, was named Director of the Year at CinemaCon. Ahead of this year’s events, the writer and comedian spoke with The Hollywood Reporter about Get Out and the lesson Hollywood can learn from his film’s success.

Check out an excerpt:

THR: Black films have long been stigmatized as not being commercial. What lesson should Hollywood learn from films like Get Out, Hidden Figures and even Oscar winner Moonlight?

Peele: There was also Straight Outta Compton. I think the lesson is that when you give Black voices a platform and the opportunity to tell our story, we will tell good stories just like anybody else. The power of story and the power of a well-crafted film or television show is really all you need to speak to people. I think Hollywood is sort of catching up to that. We’re at the beginning of a renaissance where people are realizing Black films can not only work at the box office, but they can work because there’s been a void. Get Out is fresh and novel and new because at the base level it has a Black, male protagonist in a horror movie. It is no mistake that the iconic image from this movie is Daniel’s face with tears streaming down his cheeks. We haven’t seen that before. Usually in horror movies — as in Blair Witch — it is the White girl’s crying face.

In addition to winning big at the box office with Get Out, Peele is rumored to be in contention to direct a live action version of the Japanese sci-fi film, Akira.

Read the entire interview with Jordan Peele over on The Hollywood Reporter’s site, here


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