|Who is it?||Actor|
|Directed by||Barry Jenkins|
|Produced by||Adele Romanski Dede Gardner Jeremy Kleiner|
|Screenplay by||Barry Jenkins|
|Story by||Tarell Alvin McCraney|
|Based on||In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue by Tarell Alvin McCraney|
|Starring||Trevante Rhodes André Holland Janelle Monáe Ashton Sanders Jharrel Jerome Naomie Harris Mahershala Ali|
|Music by||Nicholas Britell|
|Edited by||Nat Sanders Joi McMillon|
|Production company||A24 Plan B Entertainment Pastel Productions|
|Release date||September 2, 2016 (2016-09-02) (Telluride) October 21, 2016 (2016-10-21) (United States)|
|Running time||111 minutes|
|Box office||$65 million|
|Released||October 21, 2016|
|Label||Lakeshore Records LKS 348902|
It was the first time someone had come to their community and wanted to represent it onscreen, and since Barry Jenkins had grown up in that area, there was this sense of pride and this desire to support him. You felt this love from the community that I've never felt in any other location, anywhere in the world, and it was so strange that it happened in a place where people were expecting the complete opposite.
Moonlight received eight nominations at the 89th Academy Awards, the second highest of all nominees, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (for Ali), Best Supporting Actress (for Harris) and Best Adapted Screenplay. The film won three awards: for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay. At the ceremony, presenters Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty read La La Land as the winner of Best Picture. Beatty later stated that he had mistakenly been given the duplicate Best Actress envelope, for which Emma Stone had won for her role in La La Land several minutes prior. When the mistake was realized, La La Land Producer Jordan Horowitz came forward to announce Moonlight as the correct winner.
In 2003, Tarell Alvin McCraney wrote the semi-autobiographical play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue to cope with his mother's death from AIDS. The theater piece was shelved for about a decade before it served as the basis for Moonlight.
After the release of his debut feature film Medicine for Melancholy in 2008, Barry Jenkins wrote various screenplays, none of which entered production. In January 2013, Producer Adele Romanski urged Jenkins to make a second film. The two brainstormed a few times a month through video-chat, with the goal of producing a low-budget "cinematic and personal" film. Jenkins was introduced to McCraney's play through the Borscht arts collective in Miami. After discussions with McCraney, Jenkins wrote the first draft of the film in a month-long visit to Brussels.
At the 74th Golden Globe Awards, Moonlight received six nominations, the second highest of all film nominees. The film won the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Drama, with additional nominations for five more: Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (for Ali), Best Supporting Actress (for Harris), Best Screenplay (for Jenkins) and Best Original Score (for Britell).
Filming began on October 14, 2015, in Miami, Florida. After scouting for locations in Miami with Romanski, Jenkins made an effort to film in locations where he previously lived. Liberty Square, a housing project located in the neighborhood of Liberty City, was chosen as one of the primary locations as both McCraney and Jenkins grew up in the area. The film was shot undisturbed since Jenkins had relatives living in the area, though the cast and crew had police escorts. Naomie Harris later reflected:
Moonlight was listed on numerous critics' top ten lists for 2016.
Writing for The London Review of Books in February 2017, Michael Wood characterized the film as a study of an inherited intergenerational tragedy. He wrote: "[By the end of the film] there are still ten minutes of late Ingmar Bergman to go. The film keeps showing us Chiron's handsome, inscrutable face. The silence doesn't tell us anything, it just asks us to feel sorry for him... All is not lost, though, because as we gaze at Chiron, we can think of something else: his resemblance to Juan (his father figure). Does it mean that Juan was once a Chiron ... Not quite that perhaps, but the last shot of the film is of the young Chiron sitting on the beach ... looking out at the ocean ... His wide eyes suggest all the desolation and promise that Juan saw in him at the beginning. If we started again, would things be different?"
Naomie Harris was initially reluctant to portray Paula, stating that she did not want to play a stereotypical depiction of a black woman. When addressing her concerns, Jenkins emphasized the character’s representation of both his and McCraney's mothers. Harris later commented that although she had previously vowed not to portray a crack addict, the film's script and director's tolerance appealed to her. In preparation for her role, Harris watched interviews of those with addiction to crack cocaine, and met with addicted women. She related her experiences of bullying to the addicts' attempts of escaping trauma.