?Selma? Stars Reflect on Poignancy and Parallels of Movie

SelmaNEW YORK ? At Sunday?s premiere of ?Selma? in New York, the cast acknowledged parallels between their film about the African-American civil rights movement and recent protests nationwide, calling attention to the deaths of unarmed black males at the hands of police.

?You can look out your window and you can see people protesting and you can look at the film and it looks similar, said Oprah Winfrey, who is a producer on the film and has an acting role as well. ?People are wearing different kind of clothes, it?s a different era but the same issues still prevail.?

?Selma,? co-written and directed by Ava DuVernay, is based on the 1965 marches from the Alabama cities of Selma to Montgomery, led by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King. At the time, they were calling for voting rights.

David Oyelowo, who plays King in the film, added ?We couldn?t have predicted what would happen in terms of what?s going on, race relations-wise. We finished shooting in early July and by early August Michael Brown had been murdered and now we?re in the middle of the Eric Garner situation. I just think it shows. … We do not live in a post-racial America.?

He added he hopes ?Selma? shows ?that this struggle continues and we all have to participate.?

And participate is what some of the actors in the film have done. Actress Lorraine Toussaint said she took her 10-year-old daughter to march in a protest in New York the day before.

?I wanted to make sure that she knows that she can make a difference; that it is important to stand up and speak out when there is wrong, when there is injustice,? said Toussaint. ?Evil only propagates when we are silent and so you know it?s a difficult time but our voices matter and I wanted my daughter to know that her voice matters.?

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