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Danny Glover is addressing ongoing protests over the deaths of African American men at the hands of police officers.
“The only thing that I think is important is that they’re not caught in the moment of just protesting this incident, but that there becomes a discourse and a dialogue that looks at the historic cultural violence against men of color and the imagery created from them,” Glover told The Hollywood Reporter on Monday night at the Marrakech International Film Festival.
His comments are directed at the protests in the U.S. after two federal grand juries failed to indict the police officers responsible for the deaths of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and Eric Garner in New York.
Glover, a noted civil rights activist also pointed to the role film has played in the history of oppression.
“That violence starts through film as well,” he said. “You start with Birth of a Nation, which any cinematographer would praise as a great cinematic feat, but it was the most destructive thing for African Americans. Riots broke out. There were attacks on black people. Birth of a Nation opened up a resurrection for the Ku Klux Klan.”
Glover prefers to speak of the films that brought on his own coming of age in cinema, such as Luchino Visconti’s The Leopard, Gillo Pontecorvo’s The Battle of Algiers or Ingmar Bergman’s All These Women, all of which he says are must-see films today.
The actor had been in Tunisia this past week to serve on the jury of the Carthage Film Festival. He made the quick trip to Morocco to support Tala Hadid’s The Narrow Frame of Midnight, a film he executive produced as part of his company Louverture Films. Together with producer Joslyn Barnes, Louverture focuses on women-helmed narratives as well as films that address social causes.
“It gives us a real glimpse, a new way of interpreting what is happening in the world,” said Glover of Hadid’s feature debut, which follows a man on a quest for his missing brother in war-torn Iraq. “This is a point in time and it’s important to know that this is happening.”
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