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The Smith Center to host virtual screening and panel of new John Lewis documentary

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Posted at 1:01 PM, Sep 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-09 16:07:34-04

The Smith Center for the Performing Arts will join dozens of other performing arts centers nationwide this month in hosting a virtual screening and live panel discussion of the new documentary “John Lewis: Good Trouble” by Magnolia Pictures.

Nationally facilitated by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), this initiative aims to advance dialogues around social justice and racial equity, and honor the life and legacy of one of the country's most renowned civil rights leaders.

“John Lewis: Good Trouble” offers an intimate account of legendary U.S. Representative John Lewis’ 60 years of social activism and legislative action. It includes rare footage from his life, as well as interviews with him and his colleagues.

Magnolia Pictures, in a show of support for cultural institutions across the country that have been closed due to the pandemic, will make the film available to The Smith Center through its Virtual Cinema program.

For a $12 rental, audiences can stream the film online now through Sept. 21.

As part of this rental, audiences will also have exclusive access to a filmed interview Lewis gave to Oprah Winfrey shortly before his death earlier this year. They will have further access to a recorded, one-hour panel discussion between the film’s director, Dawn Porter, and Dr. Bernard Lafayette and Dr. Rip Patton. Patton and Lafayette joined Lewis among the original 13 Freedom Riders who rode buses across the South in 1961 to protest against segregated public transportation.

Of each $12 rental, $5 will benefit The Smith Center as a donation to the nonprofit’s Road to Reopening Fund, created to sustain its ongoing operations and facilitate planning for the day it is able to reopen.

Following the nationwide screening, audiences can view a live virtual panel at 4 p.m. PST on Sept. 21 in which Porter will talk about Lewis' legacy, social justice and civil rights themes from the film.

To see the official trailer and rent the film, click here.

To register for the live panel discussion via Zoom, click here.