Son of Bermudian poised for Oscar glory
Charles D. King — a trailblazing Hollywood producer whose father is Bermudian — is poised to add to his history-making credentials at Sunday’s Oscars ceremony.
Mr. King, 51, is one of three producers of the film Judas and the Black Messiah, which has been nominated for six Academy Awards including Best Picture.
The film, about the life of Black Panther Fred Hampton, has received critical acclaim and extra buzz as the first Oscar-nominated film to have an all-black producing team. The other producers are Judas’ director Shaka King and Ryan Coogler, the director of Black Panther.
Charles King was raised in Atlanta, the son of Dr. Winton King, a paediatrician, and Frances Minus King. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and Howard University’s law school.
With a goal of becoming an entertainment lawyer, he made his way to Hollywood where he landed a position in the famous mailroom of William Morris Agency, Hollywood’s oldest talent agency.
He worked his way up the ladder, amassing a list of clients that included Janet Jackson, Tyler Perry and rapper DMX. He became the first African-American to become a partner in the agency, now known as William Morris Endeavor.
In 2015, he took a leap into the unknown, and started his own agency MACRO, with the goal of financing films by people of colour. Fences, MACRO’s first big hit, was snapped up by Netflix. Films such as Mudbound followed, as well as TV series.
Mr. King’s Bermuda family is from Pembroke. His father attended Berkeley Institute. He is named after his great-grandfather Charles Ball, a well-known Spanish Point commercial fisherman in his day.
His Bermuda relatives include aunts Veronica Lowe and Carol Bascome. The late Kenneth Richardson, former Cabinet Secretary, was his godfather.
This week Dr. King said from Atlanta: “Am I surprised at what Charles is doing? Absolutely not. He has had a business mind and visionary ideas from the time he was young. He thinks big. His whole vision is to challenge how Hollywood has acted in the past. What I am most proud of is he continues to be humble; he is a good husband, father, son, brother and uncle.”
Ms. Bascome said: “We could not be more proud of Charles' accomplishments. As far back as I can remember Charles has wanted to break into the entertainment arena, and he has done that and more. The family in Bermuda are behind him 100 per cent and pray for his continued success.”