Deandre Arnold heading to Oscars thanks to ‘Hair Love’
A teen whose hair has stirred both controversy and support is headed to the Academy Awards.
Deandre Arnold, a senior at Barbers Hill High School in Mont Belvieu, Texas, and his mother, Sandy, have been invited to attend as the guest of director Matthew A. Cherry, whose “Hair Love” is one of the front-runners for the Best Animated Short Oscar.
“It’s truly an honor to have the platform to be able to invite Deandre and his family as our guest to the Oscars next Sunday,” Cherry told CNN. “Deandre is such a good kid, and he shouldn’t be punished for his hair. And we love that he didn’t bend to the pressure to cut it.
“We think his hair is beautiful and this is the least we could do to support him and show him love,” Cherry added. “Looking forward to meeting him.”
Arnold, 18, was told he needed to cut his dreadlocks to comply with his school’s dress code or he would not be allowed to participate in the graduation ceremony.
Cherry’s film follows a black father who is attempting to do his daughter’s hair for the first time. He launched a Kickstarter campaign in 2017 to get the film made. It went viral, and he has a “Hair Love” children’s book with illustrations by Vashti Harrison.