As the world said goodbye to John Singleton on Monday (April 29), several hip hop stars and celebrities paid tribute to the late filmmaker, thanking him for his countless contributions to the entertainment industry.
As previously reported, Singleton passed away after suffering a stroke earlier this month. The 51-year-old was reportedly non-responsive and on life-support before his family made the decision to take him off. The Oscar-nominated director, who was the first African-American and youngest ever to be nominated for the award, was best known for his films such as Baby Boy, Boyz N The Hood, Poetic Justice, Higher Learning, Shaft, 2 Fast 2 Furious, Four Brothers, Rosewood and many more.
Taraji P. Henson took to Instagram to pay tribute to Singleton, writing, "My heart is broken! I am at a loss for words. Can't stop crying." The "Empire" star pointed out that it was Singleton who helped launch her career with 2001's Baby Boy and 2005's Hustle & Flow. "You believed in me when Hollywood did not get me at all! Throughout my career when I needed advice it was YOU I called and you answered EACH AND EVERY TIME with sound advice," she continued.
Taraji also revealed Singleton had nicknamed her "Lucy" after the iconic actress and comedian Lucille Ball. "YOU NOTICED MY FUNNY AND COMEDIC TIMING LONG BEFORE HOLLYWOOD CAUGHT ON," she shared. "Up next for us was the Emmett Till story. I am just broken!" Henson ended her post sending her condolences to Singleton's mother and his children. "Praying for ALL of our strength as we try and move on without you," she wrote.
Tyrese, who starred alongside Henson in Baby Boy, shared a lengthy statement about Singleton of his own. "Of ALL the people in the world he decided to believe in me?" he wrote on Instagram. The actor and singer recalled visiting Singleton in the hospital with Henson shortly before his passing.
"We all went into every emotion imaginable," he stated. "We cried, we were there reminiscing, laughing and storytelling," he added. "One [thing's] for sure, every story that was told all went back to us all saying JOHN built a TRIBE, a fraternity of lifetime of friends, colleagues and loyalty. And we all echoed HE PUT US ON!"
Tyrese continued, "I can't believe I'm [writing] these words..... Rest in Love, Rest in Power Rest in Gods glory... Your Baby Boy aka Baby Brother aka Jody for life!!"
Other stars, including Spike Lee, Ice Cube, Chance the Rapper, Jordan Peele, Samuel L. Jackson, Janet Jackson, Regina King, and Juicy J also shared heartfelt tributes to the legendary director, screenwriter, and producer. Keep reading to see them all ahead.
I was discovered by a master filmmaker by the name of John Singleton. He not only made me a movie star but made me a filmmaker. There are no words to express how sad I am to lose my brother, friend & mentor. He loved bring the black experience to the world. ..Us at Cannes ‘90 pic.twitter.com/CaRKjZtjgB— Ice Cube (@icecube) April 29, 2019
R.I.P John Singleton thank you for helpling me if It wasn’t for you I wouldn’t be a Academy award Winner I gonna miss you bro I love you my prayers for your family we will never forget! YOU ARE LEGENDARY— juicy j (@therealjuicyj) April 29, 2019
RIP John Singleton. So sad to hear. John was a brave artist and a true inspiration. His vision changed everything.— Jordan Peele (@JordanPeele) April 29, 2019
Mourning the loss of a collaborator & True Friend John Singleton. He blazed the trail for many young film makers, always remaining true to who he was & where he came from!!! RIP Brother. Gone Way Too Soon!— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) April 29, 2019
Rest up John Singleton. We never met, but Remember The Time literally changed my life. Thank you so much. God Bless you— The Big Day out now (@chancetherapper) April 29, 2019
The best life is when we leave a trail. We leave something on this earth bigger than us. John Singleton....you inspired a generation of Artists. We will shoulder on....'May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest". RIP— Viola Davis (@violadavis) April 29, 2019
This one cuts deep. You’ll never be forgotten. Cause your work will live on. pic.twitter.com/bqCV8RTyc8— Lena Waithe (@LenaWaithe) April 29, 2019
JOHN SINGLETON . A GENIUS .— Janelle Monáe, Cindi (@JanelleMonae) April 29, 2019
Thank you for capturing US like no other .
The youngest-ever Best Director nominee and an inspiration to us all. John Singleton, you will be greatly missed. pic.twitter.com/cMWrDz9633— The Academy (@TheAcademy) April 29, 2019
John Singleton was a great director and storyteller who was never afraid to show African Americans in complex, multidimensional roles. We hope that his legacy will inspire a new generation of filmmakers to turn a positive and progressive lens toward minorities in this country. pic.twitter.com/xoCeZClJW6— NAACP (@NAACP) April 29, 2019
I’m shocked to hear that John Singleton is gone. I was so pleased that he asked me to sign for him to get into the Directors Guild. I was honored to do so. RIP John.— Barbra Streisand (@BarbraStreisand) April 30, 2019