As a historian, one of my greatest frustrations has been that historical movies featuring Black characters tend to focus on the tragedy of that person living in racist society. Far too often, Black stories are told to shake a modern finger at the past for racist behavior and actions. This is extremely saddening because Black Americans have lived interesting and diverse lives, yet we rarely see them on the silver screen. This deprives Black Americans and our children of being able to see people who look like us doing incredible things. Luckily, history has some wonderful stories for us to use.
As many studio executives may finally be asking themselves what movies they should make now that they have sent out all those tweets supporting the recent protests, I would like to present these five Black people who deserve to be the center of their own motion pictures.