The summer of 1991 was made for John Singleton. That was when the filmmaker’s first feature, “Boyz N the Hood” was released.

Singleton, who died Monday at age 51, found his calling in the movie that told the stories of young men who grew up in South-Central Los Angeles.

The film gave depth and humanity to characters who were rarely treated that way, following them sympathetically from difficult boyhood into even-more-difficult adulthood.

FILE - This July 13, 1991 file photo shows filmmaker John Singleton, who made the movie
FILE – This July 13, 1991 file photo shows filmmaker John Singleton, who made the movie “Boyz N The Hood,” in Los Angeles. Oscar-nominated filmmaker John Singleton has died at 51, according to statement from his family, Monday, April 29, 2019. He died Monday after suffering a stroke almost two weeks ago. (AP Photo/Bob Galbraith, File)

The film gave Ice Cube his acting debut, and gave boosts to the young careers of Cuba Gooding Jr. and Regina King, both of whom would later win Academy Awards.

Singleton himself was nominated for a best-director Oscar, becoming the first black filmmaker, and youngest person ever, to earn the honor.

FILE - This Feb. 9, 1997 file photo shows film director John Singleton posing in New York to promote his film
FILE – This Feb. 9, 1997 file photo shows film director John Singleton posing in New York to promote his film “Rosewood.” Oscar-nominated filmmaker John Singleton has died at 51, according to statement from his family, Monday, April 29, 2019. He died Monday after suffering a stroke almost two weeks ago. (AP Photo/Todd Plitt, File)
FILE - In this Feb. 24, 2008 file photo, director John Singleton arrives at the 80th Academy Awards in Los Angeles. Oscar-nominated filmmaker John Singleton has died at 51, according to statement from his family, Monday, April 29, 2019. He died Monday after suffering a stroke almost two weeks ago.  (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File)
FILE – In this Feb. 24, 2008 file photo, director John Singleton arrives at the 80th Academy Awards in Los Angeles. Oscar-nominated filmmaker John Singleton has died at 51, according to statement from his family, Monday, April 29, 2019. He died Monday after suffering a stroke almost two weeks ago. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File)
FILE - This Feb. 2, 2019 file photo shows John Singleton at the 71st annual DGA Awards in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)
FILE – This Feb. 2, 2019 file photo shows John Singleton at the 71st annual DGA Awards in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)
ARCHIVO – En esta fotografía de archivo del 14 de noviembre de 2015 John Singleton, izquierda, y Spike Lee, galardonado con un Oscar honorario posan en el escenario de los Premios de los Gobernadores en Los Angeles. Singleton, el primer director de raza negra nominado al Oscar y el más joven en conseguirlo a los 24 años falleció casi dos semanas después de sufrir un derrame cerebral a los 51 años el 29 de abril de 2019.(Foto Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, archivo)
ARCHIVO – En esta fotografía de archivo del 14 de noviembre de 2015 John Singleton, izquierda, y Spike Lee, galardonado con un Oscar honorario posan en el escenario de los Premios de los Gobernadores en Los Angeles. Singleton, el primer director de raza negra nominado al Oscar y el más joven en conseguirlo a los 24 años falleció casi dos semanas después de sufrir un derrame cerebral a los 51 años el 29 de abril de 2019.(Foto Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, archivo)

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