Hollywood and Washington converged in Harlem this week to show support for Angela Davis.
Jada Pinkett Smith, Will Smith, Common, journalist Roland Martin, T.J. Holmes and Omarosa were just some of the stars who came out to support the premiere of Free Angela and All Political Prisoners, director Shola Lynch's politically-charged film about the civil rights era freedom fighter, co-produced by BET Networks.
In our exclusive video, the stars talk to us about how Davis affected them personally, and Davis herself hopes the film will not only give audiences an insight into her struggle, but also empower them to affect positive change today.
"Angela Davis is one of those people who asks the uncomfortable questions," says Lynch. "What's great about the film is you get to see this 26-year-old become an icon."
"Her trial was the beginning of how we were able to have our first Black president today," adds Pinkett-Smith, whose Overbrook Entertainment is also a partner on the film.
"People think they know Angela Davis," says Charlie Jordan Brookins, Senior Vice President of Original Programming for BET Networks. "They know the name, they've seen the afro on a T-shirt, but this is a chance for them to really know her story."
Back in September, Brookins described how BET became involved with the film. After a chance encounter with Lynch, she "immediately said, 'what can we do to help this film?'" Says Lynch at the premiere, "BET has been really supportive, before the film existed, which is really important. They helped make this happen!"
Free Angela and All Political Prisoners is a co-produced by BET Networks, Jay-Z's Roc Nation and Will and Jada Pinkett Smith's Overbrook Entertainment. CodeBlack Entertainment is releasing the film, which hits AMC theaters in select cities on April 5.
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(Photo: J. Countess/Getty Images)