Smith and Fuqua pull out Georgia’s emancipation in protest for voter rights

Star Will Smith and director Antoine Fuqua’s slavery movie Emancipation move production out of Georgia in protest against the state’s new voting law.

Star Will Smith and director Antoine Fuqua’s slavery thriller Emancipation has moved production out of Georgia in protest against the state’s controversial new voting law, SB 202.

“At this time, the Nation is embracing its history and is trying to eliminate vestiges of institutional racism to achieve true racial justice,” Fuqua and Smith said in a joint statement published by Variety. “We cannot in conscience provide financial support to a government that enacts regressive voting laws designed to restrict voter access. Georgia’s new voting laws recall the bars to voting that were passed at the end of Reconstruction to prevent many Americans from voting. Unfortunately, we feel compelled to relocate our film production work from Georgia to another state. “

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Smith and Fuqua are the latest celebrities to take a stand against SB 202, joining actors Ron Perlman and Mark Hamill, along with writer / director James Mangold. Similarly, Major League Baseball decided to move the 2021 MLB All-Star Game and MLB Draft out of Georgia in response to the passage of the law, with ViaComCBS condemning SBS 202 with a statement that includes the following sentence: ” We unequivocally believe in the importance of all Americans having the same right to vote and opposing Georgia’s recent voting rights law or any effort that would impede the ability to exercise this vital constitutional right. “

A 98-page blanket bill enacted by Georgia Governor Brian Kemp on March 25, 2020, SB 202 makes a number of significant changes to the state’s voting process. That includes stricter voter identification certification requirements and a shorter period in which voters can request an absentee ballot, in addition to the elimination of mobile voting sites, limitations on early voting in counties. larger ones and a ban on people distributing food and / or water while waiting in line to vote.

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Smith to star Emancipation as Peter, a fugitive from slavery who flees Louisiana in hopes of traveling north to freedom. William N. Collage’s screenplay was inspired by the life of Gordon or “Scourged Peter”, a real-life enslaved person who escaped from the Lyons plantation in St. Landry Parish and joined the Union Army in 1863 After the Emancipation Proclamation was passed, Gordon enrolled other formerly enslaved people to fight the Confederacy during the US Civil War. Gordon’s photos were famously posted by Harper’s Weekly after an Army medical examination, which revealed the numerous lacerations on his back from being flogged when enslaved.

Emancipation It was sold to Apple Studios in a deal worth $ 120 million and was scheduled to begin filming on June 21. At the moment, it is not clear where production will move and if it will affect the planned start date.

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Fountain: Variety

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