Just Mercy is gearing up to hit theaters nationwide tomorrow but readers of GlobalGrind and Bossip got to check out an advance screening of Jamie Foxx and Michael B Jordan’s new film in Atlanta. The event was hosted by Bossip’s Janee Bolden and yours truly, the almighty Xilla Valentine at Regal Tara a throwback theater in the peachtree city.
Guests got complimentary popcorn and drinks for the film and then were treated to a powerful Q&A lead by Xilla and Janee with activist Deray McKesson who talked about the state of policing during the time the film was set vs today. Dropping facts that 90% of the arrest today lead to jail time vs 70% back in the day.
If you haven’t heard of Just Mercy it tells the real-life story of Bryan Stevenson who graduated from Harvard with a law degree just move to Alabama in order to defend those wrongly condemned to death along with people not afforded proper representation. One of his first cases is that of Walter McMillian, played by Jamie Foxx, who is sentenced to die in 1987 for the murder of an 18-year-old girl, despite evidence proving his innocence. In the years that follow, Stevenson encounters racism and legal and political maneuverings as he tirelessly fights for McMillian’s life.
We get to see Jamie and Michael act out a portion of this film inside a death row cell and Jamie told us about his experience doing personal experience with prison that he doesn’t go visit people while they are in jail, referencing the time his father and other family members were locked up because he doesn’t like that perception adding, “the preception has been turned on us so much that it’s almost like a badge of honor to be in that cell. To the point where people rap about it and it’s a hard perception to turn around.” Jamie continues by saying, I think in this movie with what Michael B Jordan has done in this movie playing Bryan Stevenson, it gives us the opportunity to see what the real perils are, to where even if your son is doing the right thing that something unethical could happen.”
The message was really felt by the crowd who attended our prescreening and we urge you to go see this film when it opens January 10th in theaters everywhere.