Gregory, who wrote the screenplay for Remember the Titans, died Jan. 27, 2023, of heart failure in Miami, a day before his 71st birthday.
Born in Virginia to a Navy family, he moved frequently growing up. One stop was at Alexandria, Va., where he later told an interviewer he was struck by the racial harmony that was generally attributed to the 1971 state championship high school football team, the Titans, from a recently integrated school.
At Princeton, Gregory majored in history and worked briefly on Wall Street after graduation. But he had meanwhile been researching his story of the Titans and moved to Los Angeles to sell the script. After many rejections, the movie was made starring Denzel Washington. It became the first movie by a Black screen writer to gross over $100 million. Gregory wrote screenplays for several more movies on African American historical figures, including Ali on Muhammad Ali starring Will Smith, and Harriet on abolitionist Harriet Tubman. “I think it takes a Black man to write about Black men,” he told an interviewer.
Gregory is survived by a sister, Lynette Henley; a brother, Michael; two nieces; and a nephew.