The movie industry just said goodbye to a legend. On Monday, April 29, Boyz n the Hood director John Singleton died at age 51 after recently experiencing a stroke. The history-making Oscar nominee's rep confirmed the news to Bustle. Singleton's family's statement on his passing thanks everyone for their support, while also highlighting his lasting legacy in the industry.
In a message provided to Bustle by Singleton's rep, his family said:
"We are sad to relay that John Singleton has died. John passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family and friends.
We want to thank the amazing doctors at Cedars-Sinai Hospital for their expert care and kindness and we again want thank all of John’s fans, friends and colleagues for all of the love and support they showed him during this difficult time."
In addition to confirming the news, his rep provided an even more expansive look back at Singleton's career with a statement, which read in part:
"John Singleton was a prolific, ground-breaking director who changed the game and opened doors in Hollywood, a world that was just a few miles away, yet worlds away, from the neighborhood in which he grew up. John grew up in South Central L.A with a love of cinema that showed itself early on. He went on to become one of the most lauded graduates of the USC School of Cinematic Arts."
Singleton's family's statement also shed light on his health struggles, noting, "Like many African Americans, Singleton quietly struggled with hypertension. More than 40% 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 Heart.org."
As for his memorial service, information will be provided at a later date, per the same statement.
In addition to reflecting on his career-wide passion for "giving opportunities to new talent," Singleton's family noted another great enjoyment of his. The statement read:
"John’s confidence in his place in Hollywood was only matched for his passion for the sea. John kayaked in Marina Del Rey every morning. His greatest joy, when not on set, was sailing his boat, J’s Dream, up and down the Pacific Coast. The American writer Willa Cather once said, 'There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in the storm.' We who have grown up with John, made movies with him, sailed with John and laughed with John, know the universe of calm and creativity he created for so many. Now in the wake of his death, we must navigate the storm without him. It is, for us, heartbreaking."
If you look through Singleton's Instagram, it's clear how much he loved the sea. There are multiple snapshots aboard a boat, including a message he posted on his own birthday back in January, which read, "Happy Birthday to me! Starting out the day boat maintenance....helps me relax my mind and soul... maybe ill head south today and watch the grey whales migrate ...life is beautiful .... sending love and blessings to the world... Appreciate all the birthday love today ... I’m still sailing strong."
News of Singleton's passing comes after he was hospitalized following a stroke earlier this month. His family previously released a statement to TheWrap, which read:
"On Wednesday, April 17th our beloved son/father, John Singleton, suffered a stroke while at the hospital. John is currently in the ICU and under great medical care. We ask that privacy be given to him and our family at this time and appreciate all of the prayers that have been pouring in from his fans, friends and colleagues."
Not long after word spread of his death, tributes to Singleton poured in on Twitter with many noting his legacy as the first African-American director ever nominated for the Best Director Oscar for 1991's Boyz n the Hood. He also made history as the youngest nominee in the category at age 24.
As the director's family made clear in their statements, Singleton was loved by many — friends, fans, and everyone in between. And his mark on the entertainment industry will not be forgotten.