The self-proclaimed “film geek” Ava DuVernay spoke to The Root about her transition from film publicist to director and her love for making documentaries, and she shares strong advice for African-American filmmakers:
A lot of us wait for permission. We have been indoctrinated socially in our society to ask for permission. It’s our unfortunate legacy of slavery and Jim Crow. It’s a very permission-based legacy that we’ve had where we don’t feel empowered often enough to just do it, and you know we have great elders and ancestors who just did it. Give yourself permission and don’t wait for anyone to give it to you.
DuVernay also discussed making A Wrinkle in Time, which opened in theaters on March 9. The film was No. 2 at the box office, and with Black Panther at No. 1, it was the first time in history that films by black directors held the top two spots for the U.S. box office.
Watch the full interview in the video above.