In celebration of African American Heritage Month, Councilman Curren Price led a special City Council presentation on Wednesday, Feb. 19 to recognize the 2020 Oscar-winning short film, “Hair Love," a heartfelt tale which aligns with the current national movement seeking protection against discrimination based on hairstyles and texture.
During the presentation, Councilmember Price acknowledged Director, Writer, Producer Matthew A. Cherry, Executive Vice President of Creative for Sony Pictures Animation Karen Rupert Toliver, and the "Hair Love" team for their recent achievement.
"The Oscar win comes at a very poignant time when black people around the country, especially our students, are being discriminated against for wearing natural hair styles," Councilman Price said.
“Hair Love” is a heartfelt animated short film that centers around the relationship between an African-American father, his daughter Zuri, and the most daunting task a father could ever face – doing his daughter’s hair for the first time.
"'Hair Love' was born out of wanting to see more representation in film," said Cherry, a former NFL wide receiver, during the presentation in Council Chambers. "We did this project to do something that young people can see themselves in. If we can get more representation in animation, it will trickle down to all the other forms of filmmaking."
Rupert Toliver added, "I have two black teenage sons, and this was an opportunity to present positive images of black men so people can start to think of them differently when they walk this earth."
With his win, Cherry, who left his football career in 2007 to pursue his passion of becoming a filmmaker, becomes the second former professional athlete to win an Oscar. The first (also for an animated short film) was the late Kobe Bryant, for "Dear Basketball." In addition to being an Oscar-winning film, “Hair Love” is also a New York Times best seller.
Click on the image below to see coverage of the event from our friends at LA This Week.