Wright State grad Hannah Beachler, the production designer for the blockbuster film "Black Panther," has been inducted into the Dayton Region's Walk of Fame.
Photo: HANDOUT
Photo: HANDOUT

Dayton will be well-represented at the Oscars with historic nomination for Wright State graduate

“Black Panther” and “A Star Is Born” have ties to the Miami Valley

A Wright State University graduate has been nominated for an Academy Award for her work on Marvel’s “Black Panther.” 

Hannah Beachler, a 2005 WSU graduate, is the first African-American to be nominated in the category for Best Production Design. 

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Beachler grew up in Centerville and studied fashion design at the University of Cincinnati before attending Wright State’s Motion Picture Program. 

Production designer Hannah Beachler, who grew up in Dayton, chats with students at Wright State University in 2017. CONTRIBUTED
Photo: Staff Writer

Beachler explained her role in films as “forcing the viewer to see things in a certain way,” during a talk with students at WSU in December 2017. 

>>Meet the Wright State graduate who helped create ‘Black Panther’

“Production design is what everything else bounces off of — it’s architecture, it’s color palette and it’s everything in the room,” Beachler said. “I’m the first one hired after the director and first one on the job after the director. I work with producers, cinematographer, costume design and visual effects.” 

Film director Ryan Coogler with some of his "Black Panther" department heads: from left, the cinematographer Rachel Morrison, the costume designer Ruth E. Carter, and the production designer Hannah Beachler, in Beverly Hills, Calif., Nov. 3, 2018. (Rozette Rago/The New York Times)
Photo: ROZETTE RAGO/NYT

Before “Black Panther,” Beachler worked as a production designer on the Academy Award-winning movie “Moonlight.” The film won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 2017. She also worked on Beyonce’s visual album “Lemonade” that originally premiered on HBO, according to Wright State. 

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“Black Panther” has also been nominated for numerous other Academy Awards including Best Picture, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Original Score, Original Song, and Costume Design. 

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“A Star Is Born,” another film with multiple Oscar nominations, has connections to the Miami Valley. 

Bradley Cooper screened the film at the Little Art Theatre in Yellow Springs in October. 

Bradley Cooper and Dave Chappelle spoke at the Little Art Theater in Yellow Springs after a screening of 'A Star is Born." AMELIA ROBINSON / STAFF

The movie features Yellow Springs resident and Cooper’s real-life pal Dave Chappelle, who was also there and participated in a question-and-answer session with Cooper after the screening. 

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In the film Chappelle plays a character called Noodles, an old friend of Cooper’s character. Chappelle’s daughter Sanaa, also has a role in the film. 

“I can’t wait for everyone to see this movie, man,” Chappelle told the Yellow Springs audience. “This movie is real powerful. People don’t know what it’s like to be in entertainment or step on a big stage. This movie really does capture the content of it. It’s gut wrenching up there.” 

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“A Star is Born” has been nominated for Best Picture, Lead Actor, Lead Actress, Supporting Actor, Adapted Screenplay, Cinematography, Sound Mixing, and Original Song. 

The 91st Academy Awards ceremony will be Feb. 24.

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