*When you hear about the new film “Just Mercy,” the names that first come to mind are probably Michael B Jordan and Jamie Foxx. However, Bryan Stevenson should also be a name you think of.
Stevenson (portrayed by Jordan) is the lawyer responsible for getting Walter McMillian (Foxx) exonerated from death row for a crime he didn’t commit.
“Just Mercy” isn’t just a story of a man that was wrongfully convicted but it is also Bryan’s story: A young black Harvard Law graduate who could have worked a prestigious law firm decided his calling was in helping the people like him and the disenfranchised.
To take on a job like that in the deep south was very risky and life-threating. Our correspondent L.Marie sat down with Stevenson to get an understanding of where he got the courage to deal with the adversity he was facing.
“You know it comes from living in a place where people have done that for generations. I live in Montgomery, Alabama where the generations before me had to frequently say my head is bloody but not bowed.”
We also spoke with the rest of the cast and asked them how the film changed their personal life because “Just Mercy” is one of those films where it doesn’t matter if you are an actor or a viewer, you will be affected in some way.
“I’m just excited to be a part of something that can create a positive change in our justice system,” says Rob Morgan who portrays Herbert Richardson, another death row inmate that Stevenson represented, because, in Richardson’s case, he didn’t have proper representation during his trial.
Lack of proper representation is another major issue in the justice system; if you are poor and on trial, you will more than likely be convicted and sentenced with excessive time.
To this day Bryan Stevenson is still fighting to help those who are innocent or don’t have the means to the proper representation through his organization Equal Justice Initiative.
“Just Mercy” hits theaters Christmas Day!