CCA Visiting Artist Barry Jenkins' Moonlight Awarded Golden Globe for Best Picture

 Janelle Monae and writer-director Barry Jenkins of "Moonlight" at the Golden Globes. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times) Janelle Monae and "Moonlight" writer-director Barry Jenkins. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Editor's Note: It was announced January 24 Barry Jenkins' Moonlight was nominated for a 2017 Academy Award for Best Picture.

Moonlight director Barry Jenkins, who taught in 2011 as a visiting Film faculty member and guest lectured as part of CCA's Cinema Visionaries lecture series, last night brought home one of Hollywood's most-coveted awards -- a Golden Globe for best drama motion picture -- for his acclaimed portrait of a young, gay black man growing up in Miami.

One of the year’s best-reviewed films, Moonlight follows the life of a young man named Chiron in three acts, chronicling three different points in his path to adulthood.

Alex R. Hibbert, Ashton Sanders, and Trevante Rhodes all star as Chiron, and the film introduces the various characters who meet and influence him throughout his life, from the understanding drug dealer he turns to for advice (Mahershala Ali) to his drug-addicted mother (Naomie Harris).

See images of Jenkins at CCA »

On Speaking Truth to Power

"I see this film's reception as optimism," Jenkins said while interviewed by the Los Angeles Times on the red carpet. "I see it as a sign that we should tell the truth, our stories, more often and more consistently. They say black films don't travel but look at this."

Watch Jenkins' acceptance speech »

Jenkins' feature film debut, Medicine for Melancholy, was hailed as one of the best films of 2009 by A. O. Scott of the New York Times. Other projects include the shorts Tall Enough, A Young Couple, Remigration, and Chlorophyl.

Film Co-Chair on Jenkins

"When I first met Barry Jenkins (after his stunning debut feature Music for Melancholy), I was impressed by his talent and his humility," says Film co-chair Rob Epstein, a twice celebrated Academy Award-winning filmmaker.   

"The authenticity of his voice came through in film as well as the panels I heard he speak at. So I invited him to be a guest teacher in the Film Program at CCA for a term, and he jumped at the opportunity.

"During his time here teaching directing, Barry brought all of those qualities to the classroom and to our students.

"It’s the mission of our program is help students find their own authentic voices, as artists and filmmakers, through mentors like Barry Jenkins."

About Cinema Visionaries

Both the undergraduate and graduate Film programs share the benefits of the college's exemplary Cinema Visionaries Lecture Series, which is designed to bring film industry luminaries -- Kelly Reichardt, Alex Gibney, Gus Van Sant, Werner Herzog, Lisa Cholodenko, Michael Moore, Barbara Hammer, John Waters -- to CCA for campuswide lectures and program master classes.

The series is a unique and pivotal curricular enhancement that inspires students to forge their own careers and become cinema visionaries themselves.