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Birth of a filmmaker: Nate Parker speaks out will be able to see a bit of my heart and of what I’m striving to do with this film. KW: During the Michael Brown case Nate Parker, an actor and humanitarian in Ferguson, you spoke of “revolution” turned writer/director, first received critical and described yourself as an “actor-vist.” attention for his starring role in “The Great NP: I originally sought to make this Debaters.” He received an honorary doctorate film to create from Wiley College, the Texas school featured in solutions to the fact-based story. the systemic Read more about the making He’s also starred in “Beyond The Lights,” crisis we were of the film “Non-Stop,” “Red Tails,” “Pride” and “The dealing with Secret Life of Bees.” then. But Here, he talks about his writing and here we are, dealing with the same crisis. directorial debut with “The Birth of a Nation.” I believe that the more we recognize that Kam Williams: How long had this project we’re in crisis, the more we will realize been in the works? that there is a need for revolution. Because Nate Parker: I’m in my eighth year of the of our historical baggage, most people project now. With Nat Turner being my hero automatically assume that revolution from a social justice standpoint, he became the means Black people rising up against focus of my desires when it came to making a whites. But that’s not what I’m saying. film. I just wanted to create a hero that added to Anyone who is on the side of the the narrative of America who didn’t look like the oppressed needs to stand up, regardless of usual patriots. what they look like or where they come KW: I asked you in our first interview years from. And they should do so employing ago about the 1999 rape accusation when you their skills and their strengths, taking Nate Parker wrote and directed “The Birth of a Nation.” were a college student. I would be remiss in not advantage of their occupations. Nat raising it again, since it has resurfaced. What do possible, and I see this journey as just that, a journey. Turner only had broom handles and axes, you have to say about the incident? I set out to make this film because it was written and didn’t even have the right to assemble. Today, NP: I’m 36 years old, and my life has been a in my heart. And any obstacle that has come before we have journalism, technology and social media, series of obstacles and educating moments. As I said or after I will have to deal with accordingly, with my yet we fall silent when it comes to dealing with before, I’m trying to come as close to my faith as faith. I hope people will see this film for what it is, and injustice. FRO-16021-Choosing-A-Loan-HoustonDefender-9p75x6p5-NewTurquoise.pdf 1 9/15/16 3:26 PM By KAM WILLIAMS Contributing Writer

Houston Defender: October 06, 2016  

Houston's Leading Black Information Source.

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