*New York, NY – Codeblack Films, a Lionsgate company, has acquired the theatrical rights to the political-crime-drama documentary about social activism icon Angela Davis.
Through Codeblack Films’ partnership with AMC Theatres®, Free Angela and All Political Prisoners presented by BET Networks will release exclusively at AMC locations in select markets on April 5, 2013.
Hailed by the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival as “a fascinating chronicle of justice and strength,” Free Angela tells the dramatic story of how a young professor’s social justice activism implicates her in a botched kidnapping attempt that ends with a bloody shootout, four dead, and her name on the FBI’s 10 most wanted list.
In this historical vérité style documentary, marking the 40th anniversary of her acquittal on charges of murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy, Angela Davis recounts the politics and actions that branded her a terrorist and simultaneously spurred a worldwide movement for her freedom as a political prisoner. At its core, the story wrestles with the meaning of political freedom in a democracy negotiated between the people and its government. Strong, attractive, and engaging, Angela Davis is one such person who became a symbol at the center of this still relevant power struggle.
“We knew that this film was important and would not only shed a spotlight on history, but provide a flashlight for our future” said Jeff Clanagan, CEO of Codeblack Enterprises. “Angela Davis is a staple in history and continues to cross generational and cultural lines in her plight to fight for the freedom of all people.”
Four decades after the trial that ignited an international cry for “power to the people,” Angela Davis is celebrated as a political icon and one of the world’s greatest voices of social freedom. Written and directed by Harlem Filmmaker Shola Lynch, this Overbrook Entertainment/Roc Nation production, introduces the world to the woman behind the legacy through Angela Davis’ own personal account of the circumstances surrounding her imprisonment.
Shola Lynch is an award-winning filmmaker who intrigued audiences with her first feature documentary Chisholm ’72 – Unbought & Unbossed. It was this work that convinced Angela Davis that a production of the story of her own life could “speak to young people in the 21st Century to give them a sense of what it means to feel collectively powerful and capable of changing the world.” Lynch’s passion for the creation of this work was birthed from a desire to investigate and discover the woman behind the icon. “When I began this project I knew Angela Davis’ name and her iconic Afroed image, but I couldn’t tell you much more about her,” said Lynch. “I was really interested in investigating her story. She was a symbol of power, but I wanted to know for what, and why.”
Jada Pinkett Smith along with Overbrook Entertainment, Shawn “JAY Z” Carter, and BET Networks have joined forces on the production of the documentary.