DreamWorks has announced a deal this week with the Estate of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for a major motion picture about the civil rights icon. As someone who has read his autobiography, collected as many recording that I can find for purchase and studied his words and actions I was delighted to hear about this, but concerned of the additional skewing of his legacy and place in history.
“The purpose of making a movie about the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is to tell a great story which could bridge distances and bring people together. We remain committed to pursuing a film chronicling Martin Luther King’s life provided that there is unity in the family so we can make a film about unity in our nation. We believe this is what Dr. King would have wanted.” – Chip Sullivan; DreamWorks Spokesman
Personally, I carry the tremendous respect that I have for Dr., Mrs. & Yolanda King to their children and remaining siblings. I haven’t had the privilege of meeting Rev. Bernice King or Mr. Dexter King, but I hope that Martin Luther King III & Bernice King will be able to resolve any conflict and avoid legal action in hopes of negotiating consensus regarding this opportunity.
It may not be much consolation or value, but I truly respect and appreciate the sacrifices your family and hundreds of thousands of other families made so that I can have the opportunity of true equality. Many people of multiple races still have no clue about these sacrifices, the implications and true examples of it. The lesson of love, forgiveness and reconciliation is one that I strive to promote each day. I understand the contempt we can have towards those who fail to consider these lessons, but we still must seek love, forgiveness and reconciliation.
When you’re willing to extend your hand instead of clinching your fist towards someone, you begin to move into the beloved community. Our loyalties must transcend our race, family, class, and our self interests.
The vision of a completely integrated society, a community of love and justice wherein brotherhood would be an actuality in all of social life is possible, only if we strive towards it. To be apart of such a community would be the ideal expression of what Dr. King coined as “The Beloved Community”. So often we get caught up in me and neglect considering he and she. Are your pride and/or prejudice preventing you from entering this community?References & Inspirations Salon – 05/20/09 “DreamWorks: King Biopic requires unity from family”