Jay Z to Produce Trayvon Martin Film, Docuseries
After premiering “TIME: The Kalief Browder Story,” Jay Z and The Weinstein Company have announced plans to release a film and television series about Trayvon Martin.
Recently, Hov and TWC won a bidding war for the rights to two Martin-based books, Lisa Bloom’s Suspicion Nation: The Inside Story of the Trayvon Martin Injustice and Why We Continue to Repeat It and Rest in Power: The Enduring Life of Trayvon Martin, which was penned by Trayvon’s parents, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin.
At 17, Martin was killed by George Zimmerman, who claimed he shot Martin in self defense following a physical altercation. Martin was unarmed.
Zimmerman was later acquitted on a second-degree murder charge. This, along with the protests that followed, helped inspire the Black Lives Matter movement across the country and eventually, across the globe.
In 2013, Jay Z and Beyoncé attended a “Justice for Trayvon” rally in New York. Prior to that, he dedicated a performance of “Young Forever” to Martin. In 2015, Hov rapped about Martin in a freestyle at his “B-Sides” concert.
“You know this ain’t back in the days, right?” said Hov. “But I can’t tell by the way they killed Freddie Gray, right? / Shot down Mike Brown like the way they did Tray, right?”
One of The Weinstein Company’s most critically-acclaimed projects has been Fruitvale Station, a film about Oscar Grant, an unarmed young black man who was killed police in 2009.
Jay Z and TWC were bidding against other studios for the rights to the Trayvon Martin story, including Fox Searchlight and Universal.