Ruth Negga and Joel Edgerton to Play the Loving Couple in the Upcoming Film "Loving"
"Loving" is a film featuring the real life story of Mildred and Richard Loving, the infamous in interracial couple who lived in the state of Virginia in 1960s, where interracial coupling had been outlawed. Inspired by Nancy Buirski’s 2011 documentary, "The Loving Story", the film highlights the struggles they endured as interracial couple in Virginia. The story follows their persecution by the local sheriff, how the couple chose to fight for their civil rights after being banished, the Loving vs. Virginia (1967) US Supreme Court case named after them and the various rulings made.
The “Loving” film directed by Jeff Nichols features Ruth Negga and Joel Edgerton, playing the Loving couple. “I was struck by the simplicity of the Loving’s story, and I hope to make this a painfully beautiful film”, said Nichols.
Since interracial marriage was a NO-NO in Virginia, the couple decided to go to Washington D.C. in 1958 where interracial marriage was legal to get married. Sadly, they were returned home and were arrested and banished from Virginia for 25 years for breaking the “Racial Integrity Act”.
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They moved to Washington D.C. where they lived for 5 years to avoid jail time and had 3 children. They really wanted to go back home.
So Mildred wrote a letter to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy seeking assistance. Kennedy referred them to the ACLU where they got in touch with a young volunteering attorney, Bernard Cohen and asked him to request the Caroline County judge to reconsider his ruling. However the original JUDGE in the case, Leon Bazile maintained his decision as heard at the beginning of the film: "Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, Malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents.... The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.".
Cohen didn’t stop there. The case was taken to the Supreme Court. Here, Cohen presented a very brilliant and personal argument saying:
"The Lovings have the right to go to sleep at night knowing that if should they not wake in the morning, their children would have the right to inherit from them. They have the right to be secure in knowing that, if they go to sleep and do not wake in the morning, that one of them, a survivor of them, has the right to Social Security benefits. All of these are denied to them, and they will not be denied to them if the whole anti-miscegenistic scheme of Virginia... [is] found unconstitutional."
This case made the couple attain celebrity status after the landmark ruling in which the Supreme Court declared Virginia’s anti-miscegenation law, unconstitutional. The ruling brought about the end of the ban on interracial marriage in the US. However Mildred and Richard never wanted the fame. So they returned home and avoided publicity.
Richard died in a car crash in 1975 and Mildred in 2008, all the while maintaining they didn’t get married to fight a civil rights battle; they married for love.
This isn’t the first film about the Lovings. In 1996, there was a made-for-TV movie called “Mr. and Mrs Loving” which Mildred dismissed it as mainly fantasy.
The film hopes to premier late 2016, though there is no definite ETA.
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