‘Coming 2 America’: How Director Craig Brewer Justifies Telling Black Stories as a White Filmmaker

Craig Brewer is a white filmmaker not unaccustomed to Black-centered stories.

Barring his 2000 indie debut, “The Poor & Hungry,” and his 2011 “Footloose” remake, his films predominantly feature African-American protagonists.

Brewer based his Memphis-set Southern rap drama “Hustle & Flow” on his friendships with hip-hop artists Al Kapone, Juicy J, and DJ Paul.

(John Singleton produced the film.) The blaxploitation-influenced “Black Snake Moan,” whose framed poster features a provocative, menacing Samuel L.

Jackson standing over a chained daisy-duke wearing Christina Ricci, peaks from behind Brewer’s shoulder, while hanging on his wall.Brewer is still riding high from his first Eddie Murphy collaboration — the widely successful “Dolemite Is My Name,” a light-hearted biopic of blaxploitation icon Rudy Ray Moore that garnered the best reviews of the filmmaker’s career while ushering a comeback for Murphy.

An ‘80s cinema fanatic, “The Breakfast Club” and “Purple Rain” greatly impacted the Memphis filmmaker, as did

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