Oscar Micheaux was a novelist and film-maker. He wrote several novels and began selling them door to door. After the success of his first book he quit farming to continue writing.
He got his first opportunity to work in the film business when he was contacted by the black-owned Lincoln Film Company to adapt his third novel, The Homesteader, to film. He rejected the offer to instead make the movie himself. It was the first full-length feature to be written, produced and directed by an African-American. The film would go on to gross over $5,000…a commercial success by standards of that time.
His films were a stark contrast to other films of the 1920s and 1930s, which portrayed blacks as lacy, ignorant and sexually aggressive.