In 2007, the East Bay Times profiled a 21-year-old Ryan Coogler, director of Creed and Black Panther.
He graduated this year with honors from Sacramento State University. Next month, he begins a three-year master’s program at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts.
He wants to write and direct movies and he wants to direct them in Richmond and Oakland, the nation’s fourth most dangerous city. He lived in Oakland with his family until he was 8.
“My goal is to start a (film) business in this area, something that can employ people,” he said. “It will be something the people can point to and kids can see it, saying ‘I can do that,’ instead of doing things that are glaring to the environment.”
Ryan and his father Ira were interviewed for the story at the Century Hilltop 16 theater, “where they hope Ryan’s films will be shown one day”. I’m sure Creed and Fruitvale Station both played at the Hilltop 16 when they came out, but a look at today’s showtimes at the theater reveals that Coogler has achieved the dream of his youth many times over: