image of Ryan Coogler
Ryan Coogler
Film Director/Writer

Sacramento State

B.S. Business Administration/Finance (2007)
  • He co-wrote and directed the Marvel film Black Panther, based on the Marvel comics of the same name. Black Panther was the first black superhero in mainstream American comics. The film was a critical and commercial success, grossing $1.3 billion worldwide.
  • His film, Fruitvale Station, about an unarmed African American man killed at an Oakland BART station by a transit policeman on New Year’s Day 2009, has become a cinematic force of nature. It won the Grand Jury and Audience awards at the Sundance Film Festival and captured the Prize of the Future at the Cannes Film Festival.
  • His humane commitment suffuses the 83-minute Fruitvale Station because he knows it could have been him shot to death that fateful New Year’s Day.
  • Grew up in East Bay and attended Sac State on a football scholarship. His 112 career receptions as a Sac State wide receiver rank fourth in Hornet football history and he's a three-time winner of the Big Sky Conference all-academic award.
  • He notes, “I learned this from football: If you get talented players, a lot of the work is done for you. If you cast the right actors, if you find talented actors who are great people to begin with, all that work is done for you.”
  • His guiding principle remains “not to think about making a sale but making a film that’s true to your goal and has the impact on the audience you desire. All the other stuff will take care of itself.”

Notable CSU Alumni in entertainment & media

entertainment & media