Matthew A. Cherry Wants To “Normalize” Natural Hair With His Oscar-Nominated Short Film “Hair Love”

Matthew A. Cherry is a former NFL player turned filmmaker, who was inspired to make the film after seeing viral videos of African American dads combing their daughters’ hair.

“It felt like a really good opportunity to showcase a black family in animation, which is so rarely been done, and also to just try to help normalize that hair for people like Deandre Arnold,” Cherry told CBS This Morning.

Cherry was referring to Arnold, a Texas teen who was suspended and told he could not walk in his graduation ceremony unless he agreed to cut his dreadlocked hair.

Cherry, who also has locks, says he deliberately gave that hairstyle to the father in the short film.

”It’s crazy that laws have to be passed like the CROWN Act to make it so that it’s illegal to discriminate against black people for wearing their hair in school or in the workplace,” Cherry said. “It shouldn’t be a conversation. We should be able to wear it how it grows out of our head just like anybody else.”

“Hair Love” also makes a statement about gender norms, showing a black father doing his daughter’s hair, in addition to carrying the laundry.

“With rent being so expensive everywhere and both parents often having to work, what happens if mom has to go out of town or go to work early? Dad has to step up and do the hair,” Cherry said.

Cherry also talked about his dream of winning an Oscar. He predicted he would someday be nominated for an Oscar back in 2012. “I’m gonna be nominated for an Oscar one day. Already claiming it,” he tweeted.

Cherry revealed that he wrote the tweet during what was a “low point” for him.

“I did my first movie,” he explained. “You think all the spoils of Hollywood are going to open upon you, and that wasn’t the case for me. At that time, I didn’t have a lot of followers, so I was just kind of talking to myself to try to motivate.”

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Matthew A. Cherry Wants To “Normalize” Natural Hair With His Oscar-Nominated Short Film “Hair Love” Matthew A. Cherry Wants To “Normalize” Natural Hair With His Oscar-Nominated Short Film “Hair Love” Reviewed by Black America Press on January 30, 2020 Rating: 5

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