FREEDOM SUMMER with special guest director/writer Stanley Nelson (FREE ADMISSION, Sponsored by WGBH/WCAI)USA | 2014 | 113 minutes | Not Rated | Documentary
Directed by Stanley Nelson
Sunday May 18, 2014
Martha's Vineyard Film Center
FREE ADMISSION by online registration, seating is limited. Sponsored by WCAI and WGBH - American Experience
Doors Open for admissions 30 min. prior to screening
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Directed by Stanley Nelson
Written by Stanley Nelson
Directed by award-winning documentary filmmaker and MacArthur “Genius” Fellow Stanley Nelson (Freedom Riders, The Murder of Emmett Till), FREEDOM SUMMER highlights an overlooked but essential element of the Civil Rights Movement: the patient and long-term efforts by both outside activists and local citizens in Mississippi to organize communities and register black voters — even in the face of intimidation, physical violence and death. The Freedom Summer story reminds us that the movement that ended segregation was far more complex than most of us know.
Mr. Nelson will join us for a Q&A after our screening.
This is a Free Admission event bought to you by the MV Film Society in collaboration with the Cape & Islands WCAI and WGBH/American Experience.
PLEASE ORDER YOUR TICKETS ONLINE BY USING THE “BUY TICKET” BUTTON – YOU WILL NOT BE CHARGED AT CHECKOUT. YOU MAY THEN PRINT OUT YOUR TICKET AND BRING IT TO THE THEATRE THAT AFTERNOON. TWO TICKET MAXIMUM PER PERSON REQUESTED.
In the hot and deadly summer of 1964, the nation’s eyes were riveted on Mississippi.
Over ten memorable weeks known as Freedom Summer, more than 700 student volunteers joined with organizers and local African Americans in an historic effort to shatter the foundations of white supremacy in Mississippi, the nation’s most segregated state. The summer was marked by sustained and deadly violence, including the notorious murders of three civil rights workers, countless beatings, the burning of thirty-five churches, and the bombing of seventy homes and community centers.
In the face of this violence, these organizers, volunteers, and Mississippians worked together to canvass for voter registration, create Freedom Schools, and establish an alternative challenge to the State Democratic Party — the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. Borne of Freedom Summer, and in response to the challenges of registering voters directly within hostile Mississippi, the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party registered its own voters outside of the discriminatory system, ultimately sending a delegation of 68 members to attend the 1964 Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City to confront and unseat the all-white delegation.
WGBH’s American Experience will broadcast the film this summer, which marks both the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer and the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Shelby County v. Holder decision, which struck down key protections afforded by the landmark civil rights legislation borne of the political momentum generated by this historical movement — The Voting Rights Act of 1965.
"A well-shaped and powerful reminder of a time in recent American history when white supremacy was decisively and courageously undercut."
-- Rob Nelson, Variety
"veteran filmmaker Stanley Nelson has crafted a searing portrait of those violent, racist times. Intelligently composed and powerfully driven, Freedom Summer is a stirring historical document. It would seem an essential addition for any university library."
--Duane Byrge, Hollywood Reporter