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Stranger Fruit, the documentary into the controversial police shooting of Michael Brown that became headline news following its festival debut in 2017, has been picked up by Gravitas Ventures.
The company has acquired U.S. rights to the film. It’s directed and written by Jason Pollock and features interviews with Brown’s lawyers and family, including mother Lezley McSpadden and father Michael Brown Sr.
Stranger Fruit held its world premiere at SXSW 2017 and quickly became a major topic of conversation due to Pollock releasing new evidence he had discovered after moving to Ferguson in 2015 to conduct his investigation. New footage showed Brown in the convenience store the night before he died in August 2014. Pollock’s new information brought into question much of the official story that the public had been given by the St. Louis County prosecutor’s office.
In the year since its explosive debut screening, Pollock said that Stranger Fruit has been back in in the editing room.
“After so much press and discussion last year when we released our new convenience store evidence, our team went back to Ferguson to do an additional investigation,” he said. “We then went back into the edit room for the year to add more scenes, which further unravel what took place in Ferguson. Mike Brown’s family deserves the truth out there about their son, not a made-up story from the St. Louis County prosecutor’s office. We look forward to releasing our new evidence once again in April to the world.”
McSpadden praised Pollock for his work on Stranger Fruit, saying that she has been fighting for justice and accountability since Aug. 9, 2014.
“We will not receive the help of lawmakers without the hearts and minds of people like Jason Pollock, who sees the cover-up and lack of investigation, along with the corruption embedded with an incompetent St. Louis County prosecutor, Bob McCulloch,” she said.
“My family and I are very grateful for Jason Pollock and his hard work and dedication to unveil what lies beneath, and stares us in the face, here in St. Louis, at most protests with a badge that reads ‘Serve and Protect.'”
Added Laura Florence, Gravitas Ventures vp marketing and sales, “So much has happened in the wake of Mike Brown’s death, and given our current political climate, showcasing Mr. Pollock’s historic investigation is more important now than ever.”
Stranger Fruit is the official Brown family authorized piece on their son’s death, and Pollock has donated the majority of the profits from this project to the family of Mike Brown.
“The way Mike Brown was killed and the ensuing events after his death in Ferguson changed our culture forever,” said the director. “In a time where racism is so rampant, it’s vital that we reexamine the story of Mike Brown to understand the real facts.”
The film will be released on VOD and digital HD on iTunes and Amazon Prime Video starting April 3. Following its VOD release, Starz has announced that it will be airing the TV premiere of the film on June 18.
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