Film critic Gil Robertson IV was born on August 13, 1964 in Los Angeles, California to Gil and Fannye Delmyra Robertson. He received his B.S degree in political science from California State University, Los Angeles.
Robertson began his career as an arts and entertainment journalist interviewing music and Hollywood stars. He wrote for over fifty national magazines, including Billboard, Fortune, Essence, Vibe, The Source, USA Today, Ebony, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the L.A. Times. Robertson created the nationally-syndicated Arts & Lifestyle column, The Robertson Treatment, in 1997, and later founded the Robertson Treatment’s Media Workshop series, an annual journalism initiative presented first at the Pan African Film Festival in Los Angeles and then expanded to the Auburn Avenue Research Library in Atlanta and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City.
Robertson became a publicist and represented a variety of clients that included music producer Quincy Jones III, Christian rapper Lecrae, music executive Big Jon Platt and sports stars Cedric Ceballos and Tony Gwynn. From 1998 to 2000, Robertson also served as unit publicist on the Showtime series Linc’s, which starred Steven Williams along with co-stars Pam Grier and Golden Brooks as well as Hoop Life, which starred Dorian Harewood, Robert Hooks and Mykelti Williamson.
Robertson published Writing As A Tool of Empowerment, a book for aspiring entertainment journalists, in 2002. His anthologies include: Not in My Family: AIDS in the African American Community (2006), that received an NAACP Image Award nomination for Best Nonfiction Book; Family Affair: What It Means to be African-American Today (2009) which was a Publisher’s Weekly pick of the week; and Where Did Our Love Go: Love and Relationships In the African-American Community (2013). In 2017, Robertson authored his first children’s book, Book of Black Heroes: Political Leaders Past and Present. Additionally, Robertson contributed entertainment content to five editions of The African-American Almanac, a reference book of African American culture.
In 2003, Robertson co-founded the African American Critics Association (AAFCA), which produces the AAFCA Awards, highlighting the work of Hollywood stars such as John Singleton, Oprah, Viola Davis, Jamie Foxx, Will Packer, Ava DuVernay, Ryan Coogler and John David Washington.
Robertson, participated on panels for Sundance, Cannes and the Toronto International Film Festival, and smaller festivals such as the Bentonville Film Festival in Arkansas and the International Black Film Festival of Nashville. Fostering collaborations with various industry groups such as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP). He also served as a spokesperson on diversity and inclusion with HLN, CNN, MSNBC, and NPR.
Robertson’s professional memberships include: National Press Club, The National Association of Black Journalists, The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).
Gil Robertson IV was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on July 10, 2018.