My OBT

What if you spent every day looking for One Beautiful Thing?

Hair Love

12 Comments

Photo: Robyn Beck

I thought showing you the film that won the best animated short Oscar on Sunday would be a great way to end the week. This is Hair Love, by former NFL player Matthew A. Cherry, and it will give you all the feels!

After being turned down by Hollywood, this charming, family-friendly story found its beginnings as a Kickstarter campaign. Cherry’s goal was to raise $75K to produce the story, but the idea was so popular, it instead raised more than $300K, making it the most highly-funded short film in Kickstarter history. It will quickly become apparent why it inspired so much public support, though it troubles me that it initially met with so much rejection in the American movie market.

“Hair Love was done because we wanted to see more representation in animation. We wanted to normalize black hair. There’s a very important issue that’s out there, the CROWN Act, and if we can’t help to get this passed in all 50 states it will help stories like DeAndre Arnold’s who’s our special guest tonight.”

– Matthew Cherry Oscar acceptance speech

You may recall that DeAndre Arnold is the Texas high school student who was suspended and barred from attending graduation unless he cut off his dreadlocks. His and other similar stories of discrimination inspired the CROWN Act (Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair), a California law banning discrimination against natural hair in workplaces and schools. New York and New Jersey have enacted similar protections, and twenty-two additional states are considering the CROWN Act, including Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. It’s both hard to imagine an argument against such legislation and sad to think it’s necessary. This world is in need of more love and less hate in a bad way. Today, though, I’m going to focus on the love.

As a special Friday bonus, I’m including the Buzzfeed video which YouTube suggested to me as a follow up to Matthew Cherry’s adorable short film. II was pleased to learn that it was videos like the one below that first inspired the filmmaker to create his sweet, award-winning short!

You can follow Matthew Cherry on his website and on Twitter, you can buy the Hair Love children’s book on Amazon, and you can learn more about the CROWN Act on the movement’s website.

Author: Donna from MyOBT

I have committed to spending part of every day looking for at least one beautiful thing, and sharing what I find with you lovelies!

12 thoughts on “Hair Love

  1. It truly deserved an Oscar

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, it should get lots of awards. We need more like this. Hal

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I can’t even imagine ..I have enough trouble with my own hair but…if its clean I’m good to go.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I loved the short and was so happy that it won the Oscar. The video of the fathers doing their daughters’ hair was adorable. When I was teaching HS in the 1990s and early 2000s, most of the black girls I taught were treating their hair to make it straight or were wearing weaves. Nowadays, among the preschool children I teach and the peers of my sons, I am seeing a majority of girls and young women wearing their hair in natural styles. I think that is a passage of time thing rather than a UK v US thing but, as a white woman, I am the opposite of an expert in this area. Still, I like to think it is a sign of cultural change and, while I am aggrieved it is even necessary to do so, I am glad legislation is being passed to end this form of racial discrimination.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love Love Love the short ❤ Thanks for sharing ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I almost didn’t watch because I thought it was going to be one of those overly trite PC pieces, which tend to be dry and condescending. Instead I got an incredible story with many layers to it….plus it was funny too! A good story change everything.

    Liked by 1 person

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