Feb. 21

Discussion will Feature Filmmakers Kathleen Dowdey and Charles Floyd Johnson, as well as USC Law Professor Franita Tolson

The City of West Hollywood’s Human Rights Speakers Series will honor the legacy of civil rights leader John Lewis on his 78th birthday with a screening of the documentary film John Lewis: Get in the Way on Wednesday, February 21, 2018 from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the City’s Council Chambers/Public Meeting Room at the West Hollywood Library located at 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard. The film’s writer/director Kathleen Dowdey and executive producer Charles Floyd Johnson will be joined immediately following the screening by Franita Tolson, USC Gould School of Law professor and voting rights expert, to discuss Congressmember Lewis’s civil rights legacy.

“Congressman John Lewis is an icon in the civil rights movement. He continues to be a champion for people suffering due to discrimination, poverty, poor education, police brutality, healthcare inaccessibility, and threats to voter rights, among so much else,” said West Hollywood Mayor John Heilman. “Despite setbacks, Congressman Lewis’s eyes remain on the prize. He is an inspiration to us all in the fight for equality and justice.”

At the 1965 Selma to Montgomery Voting Rights March, John Lewis, then Chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, suffered a skull fracture at the hands of club-wielding troopers and yet continued to embody the movement’s principle of non-violence, advocating for and winning protections for future marches. Lewis, who turns 78 on February 21, is now considered the conscience of Congress.

John Lewis: Get in the Way follows the life and career of the civil rights hero, congressmember, and human rights champion from his early life as the son of sharecroppers in Alabama to his 50 years of civil rights activism. Through never-before-seen interviews filmed over 20 years, Lewis, a masterful storyteller, tells the gripping tale of his role in these history-making events. The film also features interviews with civil rights activists Andrew Young, C.T. Vivian, Juanita Abernathy and Bernard Lafayette; and congressional colleagues Eleanor Holmes Norton, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Emanuel Cleaver, and Amory Houghton.

Once an activist pushing from the outside, Mr. Lewis is now a determined legislator making noise on the inside. With equal measures of modesty and forcefulness, Congressmember Lewis strives to persuade D.C. power brokers to hear the voices of the unheard.

This is a free community event, but seating is limited. RSVP on the event website at http://bit.ly/2Bpmm4E. Validated parking is available for the adjacent five-story parking structure. This event is co-presented by World Channel and the Impact Media Partners “Community Perspectives Film Series.”

For more information, please contact Joy Tribble, Arts Technician, City of West Hollywood at (323) 848-6360 or [email protected]. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing, please call TTY (323) 848-6496.