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2013 The Root 100

The young Fruitvale Station director is on the rise and in demand.

  • Influence: 262.1
  • Reach: 12.56
  • Substance: 8.6
  • Media Mentions: 675
  • Internet Mentions: 480000
  • Twitter Followers: 11071
  • Ryan Coogler

  • The young director behind the award-winning Sundance film Fruitvale Station.
  • Job: Film director
  • Sector: Entertainment/Media
  • Twitter: @fruitvalemovie
  • Location: Richmond, Calif.
  • Age: 27
  • Bio: Fruitvale Station, the story of the 2009 shooting death of Oscar Grant, was brought to the silver screen by young film phenom Ryan Coogler. The gripping film was Coogler's take on the last day of Grant's life, giving a raw and emotionally complex view of a life unjustly cut short. Fruitvale Station, made for less than $1 million, won the U.S. Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. Since its release, the humble and dynamic director has spoken extensively about the plight of young African American men (like Grant and slain Florida teen Trayvon Martin) who are plagued by violence and racial profiling. Now an emerging talent in Hollywood, Coogler is entertaining new ventures -- including a possible Rocky film spin-off about character Apollo Creed, potentially reuniting Coogler with Fruitvale Station star Michael B. Jordan. Visit his website and like his Facebook page.