New film "Black & White" shows the grey area of mixed families
The new film “Black & White” isn’t like any other black and white movie. This movie is giving the audience a more intimate and fresh outlook on race and racial tension that is set within the backdrop of family as opposed to the usual crime or politics.
Starring Oscar winners Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer (pictured), the film is about an attorney (Kevin Costner) who is struggling to bring up his granddaughter after his wife and daughter died. He then finds himself entangled in a custody battle with the child’s paternal grandmother (Octavia Spencer).
This film is based on the screenwriter-director Mike Binder's own life. When his wife’s sister died, Binder and his wife helped raise the biracial child she left behind whose father wasn’t around.
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"He was a big part of our life. He had another big family down in South Central (in Los Angeles), especially a grandmother who was really big in his life. We lived in Santa Monica at the time and it was two different worlds," Binder said. "And the only one who didn't make a big deal about being black or white was him. He was just a little boy and he just loved the people in his family, in his life. I wanted to tell that story in some way, give my particular take on this whole race conundrum that we all live with every day of our lives."
During the premiere of the film, actor Octavia Spencer said: "I think people on its face value think Black and White is about being black and white but I think it’s all about that grey area in the middle. It’s about love, it’s about family, about blended family, and it’s about pain and grief." She also commented that race is a complex situation in the world.
Co-star Anthony Mackie agreed saying that as much as it’s a film about race, it’s not. It’s a film about understanding family and people and making change.
"I'm a firm believer that racism is ignorance, it's something that's taught," Mackie said. "A child is not born racist and I feel that as a generation we need to get out of the way of the coming generation and allow them to be the best that they can be and not allow our sh** to convolute their view of the world."
Jillian Estell, who plays the biracial granddaughter, can also relate with the story… it mirrors her own life. She is a biracial child of a white mother and black father and some of her family members had issues dealing with that. "That was me," Estell said meaning for her it wasn’t all acting; that was her life.
Does the film represent America's race relations? Go watch it and tell us your thoughts.
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