Sunday, September 25, 2022

UVA Center for Politics joining hands with Charlottesville activists in Martinsville Seven film

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) – Saturday, July 23 was the second community fundraising event to support a documentary on the Martinsville Seven.

The film focuses on the group of seven black men who were wrongfully accused and then executed for raping a white woman. Producers of the film say this is an effort to shed light on injustices of the past.

Charlottesville activists are joining hands with UVA’s Center for Politics to make the project happen. They want to take the film to a national level, which includes hiring a renowned director and staff, so they need help fundraising.

The first fundraiser was in April on UVA Grounds, and organizers say this time they wanted to connect with other parts of the Charlottesville community. The event was at the Jefferson School African American Heritage center.

“This team at the Center for politics, they do amazing work, they do amazing documentaries. And then me, I do a lot of uncomfortable work and I kind of trigger the uncomfortable conversations. And then bringing the two together just shows, you know, I think it shows everybody that, you know, the university can also play its part in repairing and fixing and doing the right thing,” activist and producer Tanesha Hudson said.

She is working with Glenn Crossman at UVA’s Center for Politics. He specializes in making documentaries and he says he focuses on the facts. He says this film is about even more than Martinsville

“It’s about how black men have been treated in this country for hundreds of years. And it’s also all the way today, where you’re still suffering. Nothing has changed, not too much has changed in the past 200 years in the entire country. So that’s what this film is going to be about and the reason why this story is not really known very well, is because of something called the Virginia way. So the Virginia way, it was basically something that the White oligarchy had put in a set of rules,” Director of Programs at the Center for Politics and film producer Center Glenn Crossman said.

Crossman says his goal with this film is to change that.

The documentary is set to start filming in the fall and the producers hope to release it in spring or summer of 2024. If you missed the fundraising event, you can go to Donate | My Site (m7documentary.org)

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