FILE -- Production designer Hannah Beachler at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, Calif., Nov. 3, 2018. The designer’s work on “Black Panther” was one of the seven nominations the film received. “You never think a girl from Ohio, in the middle of nowhere, can get here,” she said. “It’s a mission to let other girls and women of color know that they can do the same.” (Rozette Rago/The New York Times)
Photo: ROZETTE RAGO/NYT
Photo: ROZETTE RAGO/NYT

What Hannah Beachler has to say about her historic Oscar nomination for ‘Black Panther’

Wright State graduate: ‘You never think a girl from Ohio, in the middle of nowhere, can get here. It's a mission to let other girls and women of color know that they can do the same.’

Wright State graduate and Centerville-raised Hannah Beachler is the first African-American female up for an Oscar for production design for her work on Marvel blockbuster film “Black Panther.”

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The New York Times caught up with Beachler about her nomination.

Beachler told the newspaper she found out about the nomination while working on set in Cincinnati on a Todd Haynes film.

"I had to run to the back of the warehouse where the catering was so I could yell," she told the New York Times in an interview. "And then I cried." 

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Beachler told the Times she was grateful to the film's director, Ryan Coogler, who has hired her for all of his features.

"When I met him, everything changed," she told the Times. "He's my film-making family."  

Their collaborations have included "Fruitvale Station" and "Creed."

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Filmmakers Julia Reichert and Hannah Beachler at the 2018 Dayton Region's Walk of Fame Luncheon.
Photo: Amelia Robinson

Research has been key to success of all of her film projects, including “Black Panther,” she explained in the interview. That meant studying the ancient ruins of Mpumalanga in South Africa and bringing elements of its design into Wakanda, the fictional setting for "Black Panther." She said, "I started by asking, if there existed a culture that was that advanced, where would they be now?" 

>> Oscar glory for ‘Black Panther’? Centerville grad who worked on film featured in the New York Times 

The production designer told the Times she hopes that opportunities for diversity in the industry will continue to advance as well.  

"You never think a girl from Ohio, in the middle of nowhere, can get here," she told the Times. "It's a mission to let other girls and women of color know that they can do the same."

>> Hannah Beachler inducted into Dayton Walk of Fame

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