EXCLUSIVE: “The Hate U Give” actor Russell Hornsby has a special message about Black fathers


Russell Hornsby says it’s time more Black fathers received the credit they deserve.

“The Hate U Give” star delivered a passionate plea backstage after a Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) panel about Media Diversity, co-sponsored by theGrio.

Hornsby plays a devoted dad in the upcoming film, based on the best-selling young adult novel by Angie Thomas  which details the story of a teenage girl who witnesses her friend killed by police.

“I want audiences to know that Black families do exist and that Black fathers exist and that they are passionate. That black fathers care and that Black fathers love and are faithful,” Hornsby told theGrio.

Hornsby is himself married and a father of two boys who are 3 and 1-years old.

“We can misstep, we can trip, we can fall, but we get up. We are here. We are present. Husbands love their wives, wives love their husband and love their children,” he affirmed.

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In the critically acclaimed film, Maverick Carter (Hornsby) teams up with his wife Lisa Carter (Regina Hall) to help their children navigate two conflicting worlds; one that involves a white prep school environment where they are minorities and the other within an inner-city neighborhood where the dangers of violence persist.  At times in the movie, the challenge is even too much for Hornsby, who gives a stellar supporting performance.

Russell Hornsberry and Amandla Stenberg attend “The Hate U Give” Press Conference during 2018 Toronto International Film Festival at TIFF Bell Lightbox on September 8, 2018 in Toronto, Canada.

“It’s important that we know that we understand that Black people are no different than anyone else,” Hornsby told theGrio. “You get to the universal through the specific. That we do love, we do care, and we want the best for our children. We want to educate them, we want to raise them and keep them safe just like everyone else.”

“When you come to see this cultural touchstone, this culturally specific film that speaks about this family, we want to help you understand who we truly are.”

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Hornsby hopes that seeing the movie will lead the audience to gain a more sophisticated level of understanding of the American Black family as a whole.

“Then, I hope it also sparks dialogue and conversation to start changing collective minds.”

“The Hate U Give” also starring Common, Regina Hall, Algee Smith and Amandla Stenberg, hits theaters on October 5th.

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