The Netflix original documentary series ‘Jeen-Yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy,’ as the title suggests, offers an unprecedented look into the rapper’s career from its earliest days with the help of casual footage. After all, most of it has been filmed firsthand by one-half of the now-renowned directing duo Coodie & Chike, with the former having known Kanye — or Ye — since the late 1990s. So now, if you wish to learn more about Coodie, in particular, along with his background, passions, profession, and close association with Kanye, amongst much more, we’ve got all the details for you.
Who is Coodie Simmons?
Born on January 18, 1971, in Chicago, Illinois, Clarence “Coodie” Simmons Jr. credits his family and roots as the reason he has been able to be a part of the entertainment world. He never really realized it back then, but the fact that his father bought a VHS camera while he was growing up, which his mother often used to document positive life events, influenced his aspirations a lot. Furthermore, when he uncovered his genuine interest in filming as well as comedy in high school, his family stood by his side at every step of the way to encourage him to follow his dreams.
Coodie thus attempted to study Communications at Northern Illinois University after graduating high school, only to eventually drop out. This was, as per the director’s own words, “the best and the worst thing” that could’ve ever happened to him, though, especially because it drove him to pursue stand-up and later co-found ‘Channel Zero’ in 1994. It was through the latter — a hip-hop show shining a light upon Chicago’s aspiring stars — that Coodie met a then up-and-coming producer Kanye West in 1998, leading to the start of their “brotherhood.”
Kanye’s confidence and determination, along with the backing he had, gradually inspired the filmmaker to such an extent that he got the idea of creating a documentary about his climb in the music industry. Therefore, since the artist had already relocated to New York (2001) when Coodie put forth the concept, he readily dropped everything to follow him out of Chicago once he agreed. That’s where they further developed their friendship, and Coodie met his future working partner Chike Ozah (then a producer for MTV’s ‘You Heard It First’), to achieve wonders.
Where is Coodie Simmons Now?
Coodie Simmons and Chike Ozah’s first project together was the music video for Kanye’s debut single “Through the Wire,” following which they never really parted ways. In fact, apart from other music videos, they’re now directing, producing, or filming not only the bonus behind-the-scenes footage for different albums but also films such as ESPN’s ’30-for-30: Benji.’ This dynamic duo has been able to accomplish so much because they’re wholly dedicated to their craft, which is why they co-founded a still-active production company called Creative Control back in 2007.
Coming to Coodie’s personal standing, while we know that he still resides in New York and has a daughter named Ivy, it looks like he prefers to keep all other aspects of his private life away from the spotlight. It’s also imperative to mention that he seemingly wanted to release the Kanye West documentary back in the mid-2000s, yet he had to scrap his plans because the rapper “wasn’t ready for the world to see the real him.” Over the years, the friends thus allegedly grew apart, only to reconcile and now appear okay.