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Celebrating African American Trailblazers in the Film Industry: Ava DuVernay

Posted by Kim Moseman on February 28, 2022

As we wrap up Black History Month, our final highlight of African American trailblazers who made history in the film industry is Ava DuVernay, the first African American woman to win the best director award at Sundance 2012.

2.25 Ava DuVernay

Ava DuVernay was born on August 24, 1972 in Long Beach, California. She attended the University of California, Los Angeles where she earned degrees in English and African American studies. DuVernay started her own public relations company called The DuVernay Agency in 1999. In addition to PR, her agency also launched several lifestyle and promotional networks. The DuVernay Agency worked on campaigns for movies and television shows. She became interested in directing and started writing her first script in 2003. In 2006, DuVernay made her first short film called Saturday Night Life which is based on her mother’s experiences.

In 2010, DuVernay released her first narrative feature film called I Will Follow. This film was released theatrically and became the official selection of the American Film Institute Fest, Pan-African Film Festival, and the Chicago International Film Festival. She was the first African American woman to win the best director award at Sundance 2012 for her second feature film Middle of Nowhere. For her work in Selma, she was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Director and an Academy Award for Best Picture. Other notable and acclaimed works include Disney’s A Wrinkle In Time and Netflix’s When They See Us.

You can check out our other posts about the groundbreaking African Americans who have made history in the film industry here on Blog Central. And if you’d like to learn more about the new services we are offering here at Crews Control or discuss your next great video shoot, contact your production manager or click here to fill out our free quote form.  

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