Antoine Fuqua

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Antoine Fuqua
Antoine Fuqua (29682821190).jpg
Fuqua at the TIFF, 2016.
Born (1966-01-19) January 19, 1966 (age 54)
Years active1992–present
m. 1999)
FamilyHarvey Fuqua (uncle)

Antoine Fuqua (born January 19, 1966) is an American film director and producer. Initially active as a music video director, he has worked primarily in the action and thriller film subgenres, and is best known for his Academy Award-winning film Training Day (2001). Fuqua began his career directing music videos for popular artists such as Toni Braxton, Coolio, Stevie Wonder and Prince. From 1998 onwards, he began directing feature films. Fuqua has expressed his early respect for Akira Kurosawa as a filmmaker and written about how Kurosawa influenced his own perspective on filmmaking.

Early life[edit]

Fuqua was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the son of Carlos and Mary Fuqua. He is the nephew of record producer and executive Harvey Fuqua of The Moonglows. Fuqua, in a tribute to screenwriter Shinobu Hashimoto, described his childhood as growing up in a Pittsburgh "ghetto" stating: "(Hashimoto's writing) … affected a boy from Pittsburgh living in the ghetto".[1] Fuqua adds in the same tribute essay describing his own youth stating: "I came from a rough area, and I had my own version of watching poor people getting pushed down--whoever the person was who had the power, they would come in and take from other people". Fuqua, in the same tribute indicated the films of Akira Kurosawa influencing the ideals of his youth by seeing in the films of Kurosawa, "a universal story about a universal reason that people fight for justice".[1] Before turning to filmmaking and music videos, Fuqua studied electrical engineering, with the hope of going on to fly jets in the military.[2]


Fuqua began his career directing music videos for popular artists such as Toni Braxton, Coolio, Stevie Wonder, and Prince. From 1998 onwards, he began directing feature films, although he has worked on a few music videos since then. In a tribute article for TIME magazine, Fuqua expressed his early respect for Kurosawa as a filmmaker and how Kurosawa influenced his own perspective on filmmaking stating: "(screen writer Hashimoto's) … working with Akira Kurosawa and Hideo Oguni, was so beautiful and poetic and powerful and heartbreaking. It was all about justice, it was all about sacrifice, and it made me want to be one of those guys".[1]

His first feature film was the John Woo-produced action film The Replacement Killers (1998), starring Chow Yun Fat. He then directed the crime thriller Training Day (2001), for which star Denzel Washington won an Academy Award for Best Actor. His next films were the action war drama Tears of the Sun (2003), the Arthurian legend film King Arthur (2004), the conspiracy action thriller Shooter (2007), the crime film Brooklyn's Finest (2009), and the action thrillers Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and The Equalizer (2014), the latter of which again pairs Fuqua with Denzel Washington.

He co-created the comic-book miniseries After Dark with Wesley Snipes, which was written by Peter Milligan and illustrated by Jeff Nentrup.[3] Fuqua was scheduled to direct Prisoners,[4] based on a storybook from Aaron Guzikowski, but left the project.[5] He was slated to direct Tupac Shakur's official biopic.[6] The project was postponed to allow Fuqua to direct rapper Eminem's second feature film, Southpaw.[7] However, Eminem put Southpaw on hold to focus on music,[8] and was replaced with Jake Gyllenhaal. In 2010, CBS Films hired Fuqua to direct a new movie based on a Vince Flynn novel, Consent to Kill.[9] In May 2014, 20th Century Fox set Fuqua to direct a drug-smuggling thriller film Narco Sub, which is scripted by David Guggenheim.[10]

In March 2011, Fuqua signed on to direct a film featuring the romantic love story between Consort Yang Yuhuan and Emperor Xuanzong of the Tang dynasty.[11][12] As reported in March 2013, he has stated that he was awaiting the film project to go through the appropriate Chinese government channels before directing the historical epic film, currently known as The Tang Dynasty.[13]

His 2016 film was a remake of the action Western The Magnificent Seven (2016). The Magnificent Seven is a remake of the 1960 Western of the same name and Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samurai, on which the Western was based. Denzel Washington plays the lead role of Sam Chisolm.[14] Fuqua was also an executive producer of the 2016 television remake of Roots.

On August 10, 2016, Deadline Hollywood reported that Fuqua was in talks to direct the Scarface.[15] In January 2017, Fuqua left the project.[16] On February 10, 2017, it was announced that the film would be written by the Coen brothers.[17] On March 30, 2018, it was announced that Fuqua would direct the new film with Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer writing the screenplay.[18] On May 14, 2020, it was announced that Fuqua was no longer directing and that Luca Guadagnino has signed on to direct the film with the script still being written by the Coen brothers as previously confirmed.[19]

In early 2018, Fuqua became listed as one of the executive producers of the Fox medical drama series The Resident. In summer 2018, his thriller sequel The Equalizer 2 (2018) was released, with Denzel Washington returning in the starring role. In February 2019, it was announced that Chris Evans had entered negotiations to star in the sci-fi film titled Infinite, with Fuqua directing for film release in August 2020.[20]

Personal life[edit]

In 1998, actress Lela Rochon and he were engaged, and they married on April 9, 1999. Daughter Asia Rochon Fuqua was born on July 28, 2002, and Brando in May 2004. Fuqua has a son, Zachary, from a previous relationship. He also has two granddaughters. When asked by the BBC in September 2014 whether he believes in God, Fuqua said: "Absolutely. I believe in God, absolutely."[21]


Year Film
Director Producer Notes
1998 The Replacement Killers Yes No Directorial debut
2000 Bait Yes No
2001 Training Day Yes No
2003 Tears of the Sun Yes No
2004 King Arthur Yes No
2007 Shooter Yes No
2009 Brooklyn's Finest Yes executive
2013 Olympus Has Fallen Yes Yes
2014 The Equalizer Yes No
2015 Southpaw Yes Yes
2016 The Magnificent Seven Yes executive
2018 The Equalizer 2 Yes Yes
American Dream/American Knightmare Yes Yes TV documentary
2019 What's My Name: Muhammad Ali Yes No Documentary
2021 Infinite Yes Yes Post-production

Music videos[edit]



  • Inside Out IV (1992)
  • Usher Live (1999)
  • From Toni with Love: The Video Collection (2001)
  • Lightning in a Bottle (2004)
  • Murder Book (2005)
  • Ice (2016) Executive Producer

Frequent collaborators[edit]


Critical, commercial, and audience reception to films Fuqua has directed:

Film Rotten Tomatoes[24] Metacritic[25] CinemaScore[26] Budget Box office[27]
The Replacement Killers 35% 42 B- $30 million $19.2 million
Bait 26% 39 A- $51 million $15.47 million
Training Day 72% 69 B+ $45 million $104.9 million
Tears of the Sun 33% 48 A- $75 million $86.5 million
King Arthur 31% 46 B $120 million $203.6 million
Shooter 47% 53 B+ $61 million $95.7 million
Brooklyn's Finest 43% 43 C $17 million $36.4 million
Olympus Has Fallen 48% 41 A- $70 million $170.3 million
The Equalizer 60% 57 A- $55 million $192.3 million
Southpaw 59% 57 A $25 million $92 million
The Magnificent Seven 63% 54 A- $90 million $162.4 million
The Equalizer 2 51% 50 A $62 million $190.2 million


  1. ^ a b c TIME magazine obit notice by Antoine Fuqua. August 6, 2018. Page 16.
  2. ^ nthWORD Magazine Archived May 10, 2010, at the Wayback Machine, April, 2010
  3. ^ "Cover Artwork for After Dark Comic Issues No. 0 and #1". DreadCentral.
  4. ^ Eugene Driscoll. "750 Extras Needed For 'Prisoners'". Valley Independent Sentinel.
  5. ^ "Missing Star Causes 'Prisoners' Delay". BloodyDisgusting.
  6. ^ Production On Tupac Film To Begin This Spring Archived September 19, 2011, at the Wayback Machine AllHipHop.
  7. ^ "Eminem's boxing movie may delay the Tupac Shakur biopic yet again". AV Club. June 7, 2011. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
  8. ^ "Eminem cancels Southpaw". Archived from the original on May 13, 2012.
  9. ^ "Antoine Fuqua Helming Consent to Kill". ComingSoon.
  10. ^ Fleming, Mike, Jr. (May 30, 2014). "Antoine Fuqua Attached To Fox Drug Trafficking Thriller 'Narco Sub'". Retrieved May 31, 2014.
  11. ^ ""Training Day" director to tell Chinese love story". China Cultural Industries. Archived from the original on September 22, 2013. Retrieved January 6, 2012.
  12. ^ Chu, Karen (March 27, 2011). "Antoine Fuqua to direct Chinese concubine romance". Reuters. Retrieved January 6, 2012.
  13. ^ Toro, Gabe (March 11, 2013). "Antoine Fuqua Says '24' Movie Is Dead, Still Waiting On The Script For Tupac Shakur Biopic". Indiewire.
  14. ^ "'Magnificent Seven' Director On Staying True To The Original Film's Message" (Interview with Terry Gross on NPR's Fresh Air). Retrieved September 23, 2016.
  15. ^ Fleming, Jr., Mike (August 10, 2016). "Antoine Fuqua Circling New 'Scarface' At Universal". Deadline Hollywood. United States: Penske Media Corporation.
  16. ^ Scott, Ryan (January 31, 2017). "Diego Luna Is the New Scarface, Director Antoine Fuqua Exits". Movie Web. United States: Watchr Media.
  17. ^ "Scarface Remake Gets Coen Brothers Script, Release Date". February 10, 2017. Retrieved February 10, 2017.
  18. ^ Jacobs, Lola (March 30, 2018). "'Scarface' Reboot To Focus On Core Immigrant Narrative". Vibe. United States: Billboard Media.
  19. ^ Kroll, Justin (May 14, 2020). "Luca Guadagnino to Direct 'Scarface' Reboot". Variety. United States: Variety.
  20. ^ McNary, Dave (February 12, 2019). "Chris Evans in Talks to Star in Antoine Fuqua's Past-Lives Drama 'Infinite'". Variety. Retrieved September 21, 2019.
  21. ^ Hennigan, Adrian (September 24, 2014). "Calling The Shots: Antoine Fuqua". BBC. Retrieved March 23, 2017.
  22. ^ Fuqua, Antoine. "Mint Condition - "Nobody Does It Betta"". music video. Retrieved April 10, 2014.
  23. ^ "Ladae - "Deep Down"". music video credits. Retrieved April 20, 2013.
  24. ^ "ANTOINE FUQUA". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 21, 2018.
  25. ^ "Antoine Fuqua". Metacritic. Retrieved July 21, 2018.
  26. ^ "Cinemascore". Retrieved July 21, 2018.
  27. ^ "Antoine Fuqua Movie Box Office". Retrieved July 21, 2018.

External links[edit]