School of Cinematic Arts Directory Profile

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Todd Boyd

Katherine and Frank Price Endowed Chair for Study of Race and Popular Culture

Affiliated Divisions:

Division of Cinema & Media Studies

Work Phone: 213.740.3334
Office: SCA 320

Dr. Todd Boyd is the Katherine and Frank Price Endowed Chair for the Study of Race and Popular Culture and Professor of Cinema and Media Studies in the USC School of Cinematic Arts. A media commentator, producer, author, and consultant, Dr. Boyd, a.k.a. the “Notorious Ph.D.,” has been a dominant presence as an influential public intellectual, bridging the gap between the ivory tower and the world of popular culture since the early 1990s.
Dr. Boyd is especially well known for appearing as a commentator in numerous documentaries, including Twenty Feet From Stardom (2013) winner of the 2014 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. He has also appeared in The History of Comedy (CNN, 2017), Soundbreaking (PBS, 2016), Jim Brown: A Football Life (NFL Network, 2016), Trojan Wars (ESPN, “30 For 30”), Richard Pryor: Icon (PBS, 2014),The Doctor (NBA TV, 2013), Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp (Showtime, 2012), The Godfather Legacy (History Channel, 2012), Uprising: Hip Hop and the LA Riots (VH1, 2012), and The Running Rebels of UNLV (HBO, 2011), among many other titles. In addition he has been a regular contributor to media outlets such as ESPN, The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune,, Jim Rome on Showtime, National Public Radio, and ESPN Classic.
Dr. Boyd is Executive Producer of the Netflix documentary feature, At All Costs: Life Inside AAU Basketball (2016), Consulting Producer of the A+E Studios television pilot , The Infamous (2016), and Associate Producer/Co-Writer on the Paramount Pictures celebrated cult classic, The Wood (1999).
The author/editor of seven books and a Professor described as “legendary,” by USC Trojan Family magazine, Dr. Boyd, one of the creators of the academic study of hip-hop culture, has also penned over one hundred articles, essays, reviews, and other forms of written commentary. As author his books include, The Notorious Ph.D's Guide to the Super Fly 70s (2007), Young Black Rich and Famous (2003), The New H.N.I.C(2002), and Am I Black Enough For You? (1997). In addition, Boyd is the editor of African Americans and Popular Culture: Volumes 1-3 (2008) and co-editor of both Basketball Jones (2000) and Out of Bounds (1997).
Dr. Boyd’s public appearances include, being the special guest for a FaceBook livestream one-on-one “GrillChat” interview entitled “Race in Hollywood,” with Sharon Waxman, Editor-in-Chief of (2016), moderating the panel discussion “Race in America,” with Ken Burns and Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. at SXSW (2016), hosting “An Evening with Denzel Washington: In Conversation with Dr. Todd Boyd,” at the Wallis Annenberg Center for Performing Arts in Beverly Hills (2015), and providing voice over narration for the Beats Audio Super Bowl XLVIII commercial “Richard Sherman: The Pundits” (2014).
In the realm of public speaking, Dr. Boyd has lectured to a wide range of professional organizations including, Nike, National Basketball Association (NBA), National Basketball Players Association (NBAPA), Fox Searchlight Pictures, Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles), and the International Design Conference in Aspen. He has provided consultation for Home Box Office (HBO), Corporation of Public Broadcasting(CPB), and the United States Department of State (State Department).