Director, actor and comedian Robert Townsend’s groundbreaking satire “Hollywood Shuffle” turned 35 this year. The film is a scathing satire of many Black actors’ experience in the film industry. Since the 1987 film premiered, Townsend directed Eddie Murphy’s comedy special “Raw” and has worked extensively as a television director. Townsend tells The Treatment he decided, as a young actor, to make “Shuffle” with Keenen Ivory Wayans after a particularly degrading acting audition. Townsend talks about the unusual way he financed the film. And he explains how he ended up directing Murphy’s iconic comedy special.
Director Robert Townsend on the always relevant “Hollywood Shuffle”
Hey! Did you enjoy this piece? We can’t do it without you. We are member-supported, so your donation is critical to KCRW's music programming, news reporting, and cultural coverage. Help support the DJs, journalists, and staff of the station you love.