Coronavirus Updates: USC  |  SCA


October 12, 2022, 7:00 P.M.

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex, 900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007

The USC School of Cinematic Arts, USC African American Cinema Society (AACS),
and USC Visions & Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative,
Invite you and a guest to attend


A Special Screening of SCA Alumnus John Singleton's


Directed by SCA Alumnus John Singleton
Produced by John Singleton and Paul Hall

Followed by a Panel Discussion with Producer Paul Hall, Editor Bruce Cannon,
Unit Publicist Cassandra Butcher, Actor Baldwin Sykes, and Stephanie Allain

Introduced and Moderated by SCA Alumna Dr. Manouchka Labouba, PhD

7:00 P.M. on Wednesday, October 12th, 2022

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108
George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex
900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007



Presented as part of John Singleton: A Celebration
A Year-Long Tribute to SCA Alum and Icon John Singleton
From September 9th, 2022 - April 19th, 2023



About Higher Learning

Kristy Swanson, Omar Epps and Michael Rapaport star as first-term freshmen who get a crash course in diversity, identity and sexuality in writer/director John Singleton's bold look at contemporary college life. Also starring Laurence Fishburne, Ice Cube, Busta Rhymes, Jennifer Connelly and Tyra Banks.

Provided courtesy of Columbia Pictures. Rated R. Running time: 128 minutes.

About John Singleton: A Celebration

Throughout the 2022/2023 academic year, Visions and Voices, the USC School of Cinematic Arts, and the USC African American Cinema Society, will host a series of screenings honoring the life and career of trailblazing filmmaker, iconic Angeleno, and USC alumnus, John Singleton. Screenings will take place at the USC School of Cinematic Arts and the David Geffen Theater at the Academy Museum, with conversations to follow featuring cast and crew, including screenings of:

Boyz n the Hood (1991): 7:00p on Friday, September 9th, 2022, Norris Cinema Theatre
Poetic Justice (1993): 7:00p on Wednesday, September 21st, 2022, Ray Stark Family Theatre
Higher Learning (1995): 7:00p on Wednesday, October 12th, 2022, Ray Stark Family Theatre
Rosewood (1997): 7:00p on Wednesday, November 9th, 2022, Ray Stark Family Theatre
Shaft (2000): 7:00p on Wednesday, November 30th, 2022, Ray Stark Family Theatre
Baby Boy (2001): 7:00p on Wednesday, January 25th, 2023, Ray Stark Family Theatre
2 Fast 2 Furious (2003): 7:30p on Wednesday, February 22nd, 2023 - David Geffen Theater, Academy Museum
Four Brothers (2005): 7:00p on Wednesday, March 22nd, 2023, Ray Stark Family Theatre

All screenings will require individual RSVPs. Each film will have a unique event page, which will go live on an ongoing basis throughout the academic year.

About the Guests


Stephanie Allain’s Homegrown Pictures is a film and television production company dedicated to creating content by and about women and people of color with authentic stories, depictions and representation. Allain, who made history in 2020 when she became the first Black woman to produce the Academy Awards (for which she was Emmy-nominated), has produced Hustle & Flow, Something New, Peeples, Beyond The Lights, Dear White People, French Dirty, Burning Sands, Juanita and Really Love. Her films have been nominated for numerous awards with wins from Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, Film Independent Spirit Awards, NAACP and others. In television she executive produced four seasons of Justin Simien’s Netflix series, Dear White People, and is currently in production on her first documentary Untitled Billy Preston. Her first book, I’M IN CHARGE! was acquired in an auction by Candlewick Press. The picture book, slated to be published in Spring 2024, models for children how they can take charge of their bodies, voices and choices. Gabrielle Ebron is Director of Development for film and TV. Evadne Eddins serves as Creative Executive.


Cassandra Butcher has joined Audible Studios as the Head of Talent and Awards.

In this newly created position, Butcher will intersect with multiple teams designed to manage all aspects of talent interaction and awards strategy. As part of this portfolio, Butcher will build a team responsible for creating strategic partnerships with influencers and high-level talent, as well as create a larger plan for prestigious awards for Audible Originals. Butcher will work cross-functional with every department closely with the Head of Casting and Talent and the Public Relations, Social Media, Marketing, and Events teams on all awards and talent relations efforts.

Before joining Audible, Cassandra was the Chief Marketing Officer at BRON Studios, where she steered all marketing and promotional efforts for BRON corporately and on all BRON productions. She developed and implemented extensive publicity and promotional plans and integrated marketing strategies on titles like House of Gucci, Judas and the Black Messiah, Bombshell, Respect, and Candyman, to name a few. Butcher also spent a decade as Vice President, National Publicity at Fox Searchlight, where she contributed to releasing and awards campaigns that garnered many Academy Awards and other awards recognition, including The Shape of Water, Three Billboards, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Belle, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Crazy Heart, and 12 Years a Slave. Before Fox Searchlight, she was a unit publicist on films for Paramount, Screen Gems, Lionsgate, and MTV Films; those credits include Hustle and Flow, Higher Learning, Coach Carter, and Ray. Butcher is a member of the Motion Picture Academy of Arts & Sciences; and the Publicist Guild.


Bruce Cannon began his editorial career apprenticing and assisting film editor Carol Littleton on five films: Roadie, Body Heat, The Big Chill, ET, and Silverado. He then worked as an additional editor on Tony Bill’s Crazy People and Dick Pearce’s Dead Man Out with Editor Mia Goldman. His first solo feature editing credit was The End of Innocence directed by Dyan Cannon.

He then began a long term collaboration (28 years) working with John Singleton editing: Boyz N’ the Hood, Poetic Justice, Higher Learning, Rosewood, Baby Boy, 2 Fast 2 Furious, Four Brothers, Abduction, and the TV series “Rebel”.

Bruce also worked with Academy Award winner Susanne Bier on her first American film Things We Lost in the Fire, Harald Zwart’s One Night at McCools, John Roberts’ Paulie, Bruno Barreto’s Carried Away, Gary Michael Schultz’s Vincent and Roxxy and Love Beats Rhymes for producer Paul Hall. He also worked with Quincy Jones as the sound effects editor for Michael Jackson’s song Thriller and The ET Story Book record.

PAUL HALL (Producer)

Paul Hall is at the forefront of filmmaking. As one of today’s leading producers, he is a pioneer in championing and nurturing unique and underrepresented voices and guiding established studios in their marketing campaigns to broadening platforms. His feature film credits include ADDICTED and FOR COLORED GIRLS for Lionsgate, as well as recent Tyler Perry hits TEMPTATION and MADEA’S WITNESS PROTECTION, the game-changing HIGHER LEARNING, WHY DO FOOLS FALL IN LOVE, the 2000 reimagining of SHAFT, JOHNSON FAMILY VACATION and cult hit SOUL PLANE. His television work spans all of the major broadcast and cable networks, including 30 for 30: Marion Jones, Press Pause for ESPN, Tales for BET & Uncensored for TV1.

Over the years, Paul has created meaningful partnerships within the business of cinema. Paul first developed a creative marketing relationship with Spike Lee in the beginning of his career, a relationship that remains active today. In the early 90s, Paul began a personal mentorship and business relationship with John Singleton that started with Singleton’s first film, “Boyz N the Hood”, and continued until his untimely passing in 2019. Together they developed and produced a number of film and TV projects. During Paul’s career he has mentored many first-time writers and directors through studio feature projects while always maintaining a balance between the creative vision and economics of the business of filmmaking. Later, he partnered with basketball and business legend Magic Johnson to create the Magic/Hallway production company, with a first look deal with Warner Bros. Next, Paul traveled to Atlanta to produce a series of films with then up and coming filmmaking mogul, Tyler Perry.

In addition to developing Film and TV projects, Paul regularly creates and consults with the marketing division of BRON studios. For PBS, he recently created the online digital initiatives for Ken Burns’ documentary series “Ali”. Paul began his career in the local San Francisco news market. He pioneered documentary programming for Los Angeles-based PBS-affiliate KCET, and received an Emmy nomination for his groundbreaking work with KABC. Soon after, he founded The Berkeley Group, an entertainment marketing company which created and produced the hit FOX reality series, Sightings and Encounters: The Hidden Truth. Paul’s relationships with talent, studios, and networks are well regarded. He’s delivered pictures to Sony, FOX, Paramount, Warner Bros, and Lionsgate and has helmed multiple projects for TV One and BET. Paul is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, PGA and DGA.


Baldwin Sykes began his acting career after he completed his Theatre of arts degree at the University of Southern California. While there, he was a member of the USC debate team and was rewarded with a full scholarship, he even competed at the national championships until graduating from the University in 1989.

Baldwin made his acting debut in the Oscar nominated John Singleton directed film “Boyz N The Hood” as the character of “Monster”. Baldwin also appeared in the John Singleton directed music video “Remember the Time” with Michael Jackson and Eddie Murphy. His acting credits also include the films “South Central”, “The Hank Gathers story”, “Class Act”, and “Not Easily Broken”.

Currently, Baldwin works to make a difference in the lives of several families in Southern California as a mentor and parent educator and continues to pursue his first love which of course is acting.

DR. MANOUCHKA LABOUBA, PhD (SCA Alumna, Moderator)

Manouchka Kelly Labouba is a researcher and a filmmaker originally from Gabon (Central Africa). As a filmmaker, she made history in her home country with her award-winning 40-minute directorial debut Le Divorce (2008). With that movie, she not only became the first woman to direct a narrative film in Gabon, but also the youngest director, regardless of gender, in Gabonese history. As a researcher, she works at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, where she is part of the curatorial teams developing the exhibitions Regeneration: Black Cinema 1898-1971, Director's Inspiration: Agnès Varda and Boyz N the Hood. A part-time film instructor, she holds a PhD in Cinema and Media Studies from the University of Southern California, and an MA in Arts from the University of Bordeaux (France).

About SCA Alumnus John Singleton

John Singleton was a film director, screenwriter, producer and USC alumnus. Singleton, who died on April 29, 2019, at age 51, was a Los Angeles native, and a graduate of the Filmic Writing program at the USC School of Cinematic Arts (now the John Wells Division of Writing for Screen & Television) in 1990. While at USC, he won the Jack Nicholson Screenwriting Award, given to a promising film school student, two years in a row: first in 1988 for Twilight Time, then the following year for Boyz n the Hood, which he wrote as his senior thesis on a campus library computer.

Boyz n the Hood, which Singleton also directed, had a breakout debut at the Cannes Film Festival and made Singleton the youngest person and first African American nominated for a directing Oscar. Made for $6 million, it grossed $57.5 million during its studio run and introduced Hollywood to a slate of then-unknown talent—Cuba Gooding Jr., Ice Cube, Morris Chestnut, Angela Bassett, Nia Long—all of whom would become household names, not to mention Laurence Fishburne. It gave the world a new version of Los Angeles, one that Singleton described as “sunshine and bullets.”

As a native of South Los Angeles, many of his early films, such as Higher Learning (1995) and Baby Boy (2001), consider the implications of inner-city violence. Some of his other films include Rosewood (1997), Shaft (2000), 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003), and Four Brothers (2005). Singleton also executive produced the crime drama series Rebel, created by Amani Walker for BET, and co-created Snowfall for FX.

He started “attending” USC even before he was officially a student, while still a teenager in high school in South Los Angeles. Faculty and staff remember him as a precocious film historian, roaming the halls, asking questions about their work, and engaging them in conversations about favorite films, his being Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai.

Singleton was a dedicated alumnus, making appearances at many University events, and returning to teach a class in 2016 titled “Emergence of Multicultural Cinema.” He was the 2006 recipient of SCA’s Mary Pickford Award, given to a distinguished alumnus at graduation each year; and in 2016 he received a Legacy Award from the University’s Black Alumni Association. He was an active member of the SCA Alumni Development Council and was also an SCA parent, having inspired his son Maasai to enroll at the School.

Singleton’s success created a model for other aspiring Black filmmakers. In the two decades since Singleton graduated, filmmakers like Rick Famuyiwa, Sheldon Candis, Ryan Coogler, Steven Caple Jr., and Tina Mabry, to name just a few, have found encouragement at the School. Rick Famuyiwa, who also grew up in a South Los Angeles neighborhood around the same time and makes films about the city, including The Wood (1999) and Dope (2015), describes Boyz’s success as “life changing,” and Singleton as the example of what living the dream could look like.

The School of Cinematic Arts and the USC Black Alumni Association have also established the John Singleton Scholarship for the Arts at USC to support students of color who are pursuing degrees in the arts at the university.

About the John Singleton Scholarship for the Arts at USC

As a devoted alumnus of the USC School of Cinematic Arts, John Singleton exemplified what it means to be a Trojan. He loved the university, and selflessly and enthusiastically gave his time and talent to helping our students succeed. John was frequently on campus, whether to teach a class on multicultural cinema, speak on a panel, or just because he wanted to hang out and talk about films with the next generation. He would have a hard time leaving because students always wanted to talk to him!

In addition to his dedicated involvement with SCA, John was also closely involved with the USC Black Alumni Association. A recipient of a BAA scholarship as a student, John never forgot the support and encouragement he received from the BAA, serving as an active mentor to BAA Scholars in the arts, contributing to the BAA’s scholarship fund, and engaging with students and alumni at BAA events such as Homecoming, various mixers and the annual Scholarship Benefit.

John was an example for the many students USC works to recruit from underrepresented communities, who have the talent to also be groundbreaking scholars, artists and creators like John, but don’t know how to get there. This is an important part of his legacy, and we hope you will continue that legacy by making a gift toward the John Singleton Scholarship for the Arts at USC.

Designed to honor John’s love for and legacy within both SCA and the BAA, this scholarship fund will support students of color from the greater Los Angeles Metropolitan area and to students from underrepresented minorities within the University community who are pursuing an education in the arts at USC.

Learn more at

About the USC African American Cinema Society (AACS)

Founded by the late John Singleton, while still a working student, and David L. Watts , the African American Cinema Society is an evolving incubator of artists and creatives of all sorts interested in the entertainment business and industry. We host events/screenings on and off-campus with special guests and Q&As. Our organization receives invitations to world premieres from studios, such as Disney, Marvel, and Sony because of the life and legacy of our predecessors. AACS continues to be most proud of establishing networking and collaboration opportunities as well as industry internships to our SCA community from acceptance through graduation.

Vision: The purpose of this organization is to provide networking opportunities for people of color, encourage a support system across all disciplines of interest as it relates to entertainment, but especially inside the cinema school.

Mission: The mission of the African American Cinema Society is to highlight and promote art and artists who are invested in showcasing complex and sophisticated representations of blackness and the black diaspora. 

We collaborate with Black University of Southern California students to create an environment in which we can thrive. Whether it’s networking events, screenings, Q&A’s with industry professionals, or advocating for students, we are pride ourselves on embodying the change we wish to see.

The current presidents are Catelin Shane (Graduate Production MFA) and Isaiah Simon (undergraduate Writing BA).

@uscaacs on all social media

Check-In & Reservations

This screening is free of charge and open to the public. A reservation confirmation will automatically be sent to your e-mail account upon successfully making an RSVP through this website. Doors will open at 6:30 P.M.

All SCA screenings are OVERBOOKED to ensure seating capacity in the theater, therefore seating is not guaranteed based on RSVPs. The RSVP list will be checked in on a first-come, first-served basis until the theater is full. Once the theater has reached capacity, we will no longer be able to admit guests, regardless of RSVP status.


On-campus parking at the University of Southern California is limited, and it is best to visit the USC Transportation Website for the most up-to-date information if you plan to drive and park on campus:

This program is generously sponsored by

For more information about upcoming programming and events offered by USC Visions and Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative, please visit their website.

Contact Information

Name: Alessandro Ago