Jesse Williams is a noted actor and activist, but he can now add director to his many titles. The 37-year-old is directing a new film that will tackle one of America’s ugliest moments in history.
According to Deadline.com, Williams is set to direct a movie on the aftermath of the lynching of 14-year-old Emmett Louis Till in 1955 Mississippi. The film focuses on the journey of Till’s mother, Mamie Mobley Till, who became a civil rights icon after her son’s murder. Titled “Till,” the screenplay will be adapted from the 2005 documentary “The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till” and written by Michael Reilly and civil rights filmmaker Keith A. Beauchamp.
The Till family supports the film and production will begin in summer 2019.
Williams told Deadline.com, “I’m honored to be directing the story of Mamie & Emmett, a tale of revolutionary defiance in the face of tremendous personal and public devastation. An exploration of power and pulling back the curtain on cultural violence; of boyhood and maternity challenging America’s reflex to hide from itself; underdogs refusing to pretend that terror is freedom.”
Emmett Till was accused of whistling at a white woman in Mississippi in 1955. He was murdered, his body and face mutilated, and it became an international story. The white woman who said Till whistled at her, Carolyn Bryant, would later admit she fabricated the entire story. The white men who murdered Till were never indicted. Mamie Till passed away in 2003.