Lee Daniels honors Marlon Riggs in NEON’s final installment of its Black History legacy series

By GLAAD |
March 2, 2020

NEON, an ongoing digital content series that aims to increase the visibility of Black LGBTQ people, has released the final installment in its Black History legacy series, which looks at the impact that filmmaker, educator, and LGBTQ rights activist Marlon Riggs has had on Academy-Award nominated director, writer, and producer Lee Daniels.

Check out the photo and video below:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the U.S. and abroad. This #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. Today we are looking at the impact Marlon Riggs has had on Academy Award Nominated Director, Writer and Producer @leedaniels. Daniels is a filmmaker whose work is trademarked by authenticity and candor, providing audiences with a unique and refreshing experience and character insight with each of his projects. SHADOWBOXER marked Daniels’ directorial debut. Daniels’ production company, Lee Daniels Entertainment, made its feature film debut with MONSTER'S BALL, making Daniels the sole African-American producer of an Oscar-winning and Oscar-nominated film. Daniels also produced THE WOODSMAN which was nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards. Daniels is widely known for his Academy Award winning film PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL PUSH BY SAPPHIRE. Daniels was the first African American to be nominated for a Director's Guild of America Award for "Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film" on behalf of PRECIOUS. In 2013, he released the critically acclaimed box office smash LEE DANIELS’ THE BUTLER. Daniels’ most recent work includes the hit series EMPIRE for FOX, for which he wrote and directed the pilot and continues serves as a producer on the series. In 2015, Daniels went on to sign an overall development deal with Fox television, where he continues to create develop, write, direct and supervise new projects under Lee Daniels Entertainment. In 2018 Daniels re-upped his overall deal with Fox television. In addition to his successful film career, Daniels is also an advocate and philanthropist. Daniels sits on numerous boards including Ghetto Film School, a non-profit which helps to educate, develop, and celebrate the next generation of great American storytellers. Daniels is also a longtime LGBT@ activist, as well as a strong supporter of many charitable organizations. Video by @akcorlette Photography by @jveloz Production design by @juhrayeraye

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Marlon Riggs was an American filmmaker, educator, and LGBTQ rights activist. Riggs is best known for producing work that highlighted controversial issues facing the African American community, particularly portrayals of Black masculinity. Riggs produced, wrote, and directed many well-known and critically acclaimed documentary films, including Ethnic Notions, Tongues Untied, Color Adjustment, and Black is... Black Ain't. Throughout his career, Riggs used his films to start new conversations about Black identity and open the door for deeper dialogue about the intersection between race and sexuality in America.

Lee Daniels is an Academy-Award nominated director, writer and producer. Daniels’ work is trademarked by authenticity and candor, providing audiences with a unique and refreshing experience and character insight with each of his projects. Shadowboxer marked Daniels’ directorial debut. Daniels’ production company, Lee Daniels Entertainment, made its feature film debut with Monster’s Ball, making Daniels the sole African-American producer of an Oscar-winning and Oscar-nominated film. Daniels also produced The Woodsman which was nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards. Daniels is widely known for his Academy Award winning film Precious, based on the novel Push by Sapphire. Daniels was the first African American to be nominated for a Director's Guild of America Award for "Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film" on behalf of Precious. In 2013, he released the critically acclaimed box office smash Lee Daniels’ The Butler.

Daniels’ most recent work includes the hit series Empire for Fox, for which he wrote and directed the pilot and continues serves as a producer on the series. In 2015, Daniels went on to sign an overall development deal with Fox Television, where he continues to create develop, write, direct and supervise new projects under Lee Daniels Entertainment. In 2018, Daniels re-upped his overall deal with Fox Television. In addition to his successful film career, Daniels is also an advocate and philanthropist. Daniels sits on numerous boards including Ghetto Film School, a non-profit which helps to educate, develop, and celebrate the next generation of great American storytellers. Daniels is also a longtime LGBTQ activist, as well as a strong supporter of many charitable organizations.

Lee Daniels also shared the NEON post on his Instagram: 


Throughout the month of February, NEON’s Black History legacy series showcased current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. Check out the previously released Black History legacy series installments below:

Roya Marsha honoring Audre Lorde:


Twiggy Pucci Garçon honoring Willi Ninja:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. This week we are taking a look at the impact of the legendary ballroom figure, Willi Ninja has had on Twiggy Pucci Garcon (@simplytwiggy). She is an activist, advocate, and healer. Twiggy has collaborated with artists, filmmakers, academics and policymakers to increase visibility of both creative and sociopolitical agendas. With over 13 years of experience in the public health education and direct services, she has extensive knowledge of the needs of the LGBTQ youth population and how to foster relationships with organizations that offer effective quality services. Twiggy is the Senior Program Director at True Colors United. She also sits on the Board of Directors for Doc Society and serve as a consultant and choreographer on Ryan Murphy’s 7-time Emmy nominated hit FX series, POSE. She is a consulting programmer for Outfest, Newfest, and Outfest Fusion, the Overall Overseer for the Legendary International House of Comme Des Garcon, and the Chief Ambassador for the Center for Black Equity. #NEONxGLAAD Photography by @laquanndawson Video by @akcorlette Makeup by @kayemakeup

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Guy Anthony honoring Billy Strayhorn:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. This week we are jamming out to the impact Billy Strayhorn has had on emerging recording artist, Guy Anthony (@iamguyanthony). Guy is a well-respected HIV/AIDS activist, community leader, author and musician. With the release of his first album, Made in Detroit, Guy is slated to take on the music industry the same way he’s taken on his activism. Diagnosed with HIV as a teen, Guy has dedicated his adult life to the pursuit of neutralizing local and global HIV/AIDS-related stigmatization. He released Pos(+)tively Beautiful: Affirmations, Advocacy & Advice on World AIDS Day in 2012. This collection of inspiring narratives, raw imagery, and affirming anecdotes has earned Guy much acclaim, including being named one of the top 100 HIV prevention leaders under 30 by POZ Magazine, one of the top 100 Black LGBTQ/SGL Emerging Leaders to Watch by National Black Justice Coalition, and one of DBQ Magazine’s LOUD 100 which happens to be the only LGBTQ list of 100 influential people of color. Currently, Guy serves as a brand ambassador to ViiV Healthcare and the AIDS Healthcare Foundation. He is the Founder of the Black, Gifted & Whole Foundation, a two-fold intermediary organization that provides scholarships to Black gay men attending college. Guy currently resides in Brooklyn, New York and is focused on expanding Black, Gifted & Whole into international markets. #NEONxGLAAD Photography by @laquanndawson Video by @akcorlette Makeup by @kayemakeup

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Torrian L. Baskerville honoring Bayard Rustin:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. This week we are looking at the impact Bayard Rustin has had on advocate, Torrian L. Baskerville (@baskerville_mwg). Torrian is an unapologetic Black Queer advocate, activist and agent of change. He has a deep love for social service and an unwavering drive to reduce health disparities, increase visibility and improve health outcomes for marginalized populations; especially youth and young adults, persons living with HIV, and Black and Latinx men who have sex with men. Torrian is the Statewide LGBTQ Prevention Manager at Hyacinth Foundation and Founder/Managing Partner of Mounted Wings Group, LLC. He currently sits on several advisory boards including the New Jersey HIV Planning Group and He is Valuable, Incorporated; and serves as Board Chair of The Door: Adolescent Health Center in New York City. #NEONxGLAAD Photography by @laquanndawson Video by @akcorlette Makeup by @kayemakeup

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Jari Jones honoring Marsha P. Johnson:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. This week we are looking at the impact Marsha P. Johnson has had on actress, Jari Jones (@IAMJARIJONES). Jari is a Black Transgender actress, curve model, activist and creative. With her career start in theater, she has graced some of New York's greatest stages, such as The Public Theater's Production of Elizabeth Swado's "The Runaways", Here Art Center's "The Sex Myth: A Devised Play" and Lin Manuel's “In The Heights.” Jari later shifted her career into TV & Film, and have been featured in POSE , Sundance nominated film “Adam”, Netflix’s Tales of The City and the highly acclaimed “Transparent: Musical Movie Finale.” Recently she has produced alongside Martin Scorsese and RT Films, as well as costarred in the new film Port Authority which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. Jari is the first Black trans woman to have a film produced and premiere at Cannes in its 72 year entirety. After building a successful career as a fashion and editorial photographer, she jumped on the other side of the lens and into publication and campaigns, quickly becoming internationally recognized as a Trans and Body Positive model and influencer. Jari has been featured in publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, Teen Vogue, Allure and recently in PAPER Magazine Predictions: 100 people taking over 2019, with her insight on fashion within politics, body positivity, LGBTQ community building and relationships. #NEONxGLAAD Photography by @laquanndawson Video by @akcorlette Makeup by @kayemakeup

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Danielle Cooper honoring Stormé DeLarverie:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. This week we are looking at the impact Stormé DeLarverie has had on creative, Danielle Cooper (@daniellecooper). Danielle is a creative, actor, and activist. In 2014, Danielle launched “She’s a Gent,” a blog that celebrates and explores personal style while also using it as a tool to bring awareness to QPOC (queer people of color) and androgynous women in menswear. In a very short period of time, her platform transformed into a multi-digital publication which creates visibility for the underrepresented QPOC and LGBTQ+ communities. Danielle is committed to empowering others through content creation and storytelling. “She’s a Gent” has been recognized in Forbes, The New York Times, Huffington Post, OUT Magazine, Vogue, and Nike.com. In addition to creating "She's a Gent," Danielle recently made her acting debut on Season 2 of the historic and groundbreaking 7-time Emmy nominated FX series , POSE. Her mission is to continue to help open doors for queer people of color in TV/film and all media platforms. Photography by @laquanndawson Video by @akcorlette Makeup by @kayemakeup

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Anthony Wayne honoring Sylvester:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we're showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past. This week we are looking at the mighty real impact Sylvester has had on performer Anthony Wayne (@MrAWAYNE). Anthony is a producer, writer, and actor. He has been seen on Broadway in “Anything Goes”, “Once on this Island”, "Priscilla, Queen of the Desert,” and “Pippin.” His touring credits include "A Chorus Line" as Richie, ""The Color Purple"" and "Fame the Musical" as Tyrone Jackson. Recently, he just completed a yearlong run in the new Broadway production of "Tootsie the Musical” and is working on bringing his show "Mighty Real: A Fabulous Sylvester Musical” to Broadway. Additionally, Anthony and Kendrell Bowman created, ANTHONYKEN, LLC. a production company which specializes in bringing community issues and social awareness to the forefront through performing arts and media. The company was created to inspire and encourage others to be multifaceted individuals through adversity. To learn more check out ANTHONYKEN.com and AWAYNE.com. Hair: Rocky Sewer (@dennymoes) Makeup: Kaye Trueblood (@kayemakeup) Clothing: That’s My Richard / Richard Gross (@thatsmyrichard) Nails: The Nail Suite by Lisa Logan / Lisa Logan (@thenailsuite / @lisa_logan) Photography by @laquanndawson Video by @akcorlette Makeup by @kayemakeup

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NEON leverages the power of storytelling and GLAAD’s platform to create multi-dimensional, accurate portraits of the Black LGBTQ experience. For more information about NEON, including members of the team and upcoming content, click here.