July 8, 1945 |
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Education||Pennsylvania State University (1967)|
|Spouse(s)||Marguerite (1982 – present) 3 children|
|Partner(s)||Eleanor McCoy (1968-1977) 1 child|
|Children||Sanaa Lathan, Tendaji Lathan, Lilane Lathan, Arielle Lathan, Colette Lathan|
|Awards||2003 Peabody Award for Def Poetry
2004 Diversity Award, Caucus of Producers, Writers and Directors
2013 Lifetime Achievement Award, Caucus of Producers, Writers and Directors
Six NAACP Image Awards
Stan Lathan (born July 8, 1945) is an American television and film director and television producer. He is executive producer and director of the fourth season of BET’s "Real Husbands of Hollywood." He is also directing the TV Land sitcom The Soul Man.
The youngest of three boys, Lathan was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His mother, Julia, was a clerical employee. His brothers are William Lathan of New York, a medical doctor, and Charles Lewis, a musician living in Phoenix, Arizona.
Lathan graduated from Overbrook High School in 1963. He earned his bachelor of arts in theater at Pennsylvania State University in 1967 and moved to Boston to pursue a master's degree from Boston University. In response to the heightened tension surrounding the civil rights movement at that time, he was recruited by television station WGBH-TV in 1968 to help create and direct the country's first magazine show entirely produced by, for, and about African Americans-- Say Brother.
Lathan has directed the pilots for many sitcoms, including Martin, Moesha, The Parkers, The Steve Harvey Show, Amen, South Central, Cedric the Entertainer Presents, All of Us, Eve!, The Soul Man and Real Husbands of Hollywood.
He was executive producer and director of Dave Chappelle’s comedy specials Killin’ Them Softly for HBO and For What It’s Worth for Showtime. He also executive produced and directed "Cedric The Entertainer: Taking You Higher"—a one-hour comedy special for HBO—and It’s Black Entertainment—a two-hour musical documentary for Showtime.
Lathan began directing network television in 1973, when he was brought to Los Angeles to direct multiple episodes of Sanford & Son. He went on to direct Hill Street Blues, Miami Vice, Cagney & Lacey, Frank’s Place, Roc and others. He also directed the 1984 feature film Beat Street for Orion Pictures.
Lathan directed dramas for public television’s Great Performances, American Playhouse and The American Short Story. For PBS, he directed Alvin Ailey: Memories & Visions and other dance specials featuring The Martha Graham Company, Mikhail Baryshnikov and Agnes de Mille. He directed three seasons of the music and African-American arts series, SOUL!, and he was one of the first directors of Sesame Street.
In 1989, Lathan partnered with Russell Simmons to create the comedy franchise Russell Simmons' Def Comedy Jam on HBO. This franchise showcased many of today’s popular television & movie stars, including Chris Tucker, Dave Chappelle, Martin Lawrence, Bernie Mac, Cedric the Entertainer, Steve Harvey, Mo’Nique, Mike Epps, Tracey Morgan, DL Hughley, and JB Smoove.
Lathan and Simmons developed the Russell Simmons Presents brand and received a Peabody Award for their series "Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry" on HBO. That same year, they produced—and Lathan directed—Russell Simmons’ Def Poetry Jam on Broadway. The show won a Tony Award for best special theatrical event, and has since toured both domestically and internationally.
In 2006, Lathan and Simmons created Run’s House, a five-season program for MTV that spawned a spinoff, Daddy’s Girls. The duo also executive-produced Running Russell Simmons, an eight-part series for Oxygen and Russell Simmons Presents: The Ruckus for Comedy Central.
In 2008, Lathan was the creator and executive producer of Brave New Voices, a seven-part docu-reality series for HBO. As a follow up, in 2009, Lathan staged and directed An Evening of Poetry, Music and Spoken Word, hosted by President Obama and Michelle Obama in the White House.
Lathan received the 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Caucus for Producers, Writers and Directors. To date, he has received six NAACP Image Awards for his achievements in film and television. He was also honored in May 2014 by the Directors Guild of America for his directing career.
- "Movies & TV - Stan Lathan". New York Times. 2015. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
- "The HistoryMakers: Stan Lathan". The HistoryMakers. 2015. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
- "SOUL! Interview: Director Stan Lathan". Thirteen - WNET - New York Public Media. WNET New York. January 2009. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
- "Simmons Lathan Media Group Announces Corporate Launch: Entertainment Trailblazers Russell Simmons and Stan Lathan Introduce New Production, Acquisition and Distribution Model". PR Newswire. 19 June 1989. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
- "Mo'Nique Biography". Biography.com. 2015. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "JB Smoove". BET.com. 2015. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "The Def Jam Generation: The Arrival of Def Comedy Jam". The Paley Center for Media. 2009. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "Comedy preview: Russell Simmons Presents Def Comedy Jam, on tour". TheGuardian.com. 2008. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "Spread the Word: Tony Award-Winning Def Poetry Jam Launches Tour in Philadelphia, Oct. 16". Playbill.com. 2003. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "Simmons Lathan Media Group". Rush Communications. 2009. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
- "Premiere Screening of Brave New Voices, a New HBO Series About Youth Speaks Poets, Draws Stars Robert Redford, Stan Lathan, Benjamin Bratt, Peter Bratt and Dave Eggers". PRNewswire.com. 24 March 2009. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
- "A Celebration of African American TV Directors". Directors Guild of America. 15 May 2014. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
- Braxton, Greg (16 May 2014). "Dave Chappelle helps out in salute to director Stan Lathan". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 18 January 2015.