For each day in the month of February, the African American Steering Committee will be highlighting Local 700’s African American members, both past and present, and their accomplishments. We look forward to showing the contributions and influences African Americans have had on the industry.
Name: Calvin O’Neal Jr.
What’s your job? Animation Editor
List the credits you’re most proud of. “The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore” (2011) [Winner Oscar Best Animated Short], “The Proud Family Louder and Prouder” (2022), “My Adventures With Superman” (2023)
What are you working on right now? My Adventures Superman Season 2
Who and what are your influences and/or mentors? Mentors: Bruce Smith. Influences: Peter Ramsey, Spike Lee, Jordan Peele & Ryan Coogler
What books are you reading, shows are you watching and/or movies you’re excited about? “Across The SpiderVerse,” “Godzilla Minus One,” “Opphenheimer”
What would be your superhero name? The Equinox
What are your black history month memories and any cultural or historical impacts on your life? Watching “My Friend Martin” at The Detroit African American Museum when I was 9 years old. I still think about the emotional impact of this ending to this very day.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given? There are always going to be people that will try to stifle your creativity. The real gift and the real power comes from creating your art anyway.
If you could time travel, when would you go and why? I’d go back in time to ask my grandmother more questions about being an artist and her experiences she had being creative individual during the civil rights era. She passed away when I was younger. So after growing up and finding my way through the industry has given me a multitude of questions I wish I could have asked.
What’s your favorite (Black) television/movie moment? I have cosplayed as Lando Calrissian half a dozen times and enjoy playing Pokémon. I know all the lyrics to “Del Tha Funkee Homosapians” verses on the Gorillaz’s song “Clint Eastwood.” Favorite Black Movie moment is Richard Roundtree’s last line in the 1971 cult classic “Shaft.” One of my favorite cinematic moments, EVER.
Was there a television show/movie that inspired you to pursue your career? “Forrest Gump, “A Goofy Movie,” “Bebe’s Kids,” “The Truman Show” and “Space Jam.”
What’s your personal/professional mantra? Believing you can be the one to pursue your dreams & passions is the first step into making them a reality.
What’s the last show/movie that left you speechless? “Across The Spider-Verse.”
What would be your dream project to work on? My dream project would be to work on anything starring Eddie Murphy or Jim Carrey.