Tuesday, August 28, 2007

British Actor Produces Pro-Mumia "Documentary"

(British actor Colin Firth)
In 1996 when the "documentary" about Mumia called "A Case For Reasonable Doubt" aired on HBO, the movement to free him was at it’s high-water mark.
For me personally, it was a solidifying moment that wedded me to the cause.

Of course, little did I know than, that the film was a slickly produced bit of propaganda that would have made Nazi film-maker, Leni Riefenstahl proud.
Since than, numerous other films on the case have been produced, all of which have been made as contributions to Jamal’s cause, none of which bother with potential impediments to their story like factuality or integrity.

Now, over a decade later, another pro-Jamal piece of agit-prop is in the works. Directed by Marc Evans, an established British film-maker, produced by the actor Colin Firth, the documentary is said to give viewers"A look at the life of imprisoned political activist and former Black Panther member, Mumia Abu-Jamal, who's death sentence for killing a police officer was overturned in 2001 due to errors made during his original 1982 sentencing hearing."

The title of the as of yet un-released film is "In Prison My Whole Life" and is set to take a new spin on the usual theme of Mumia as an articulate victim of bigoted oppression. According to Firth "My point of entry was this white, middle-class English guy named William Francome, whose birthday coincided with the killing, and a journey of this boy's consciousness," Firth told Variety Magazine. "It's a prism to look at how much society and grassroots politics have changed over 25 years."

At the film’s Myspace page is an entry from William Francome whose expertise in Jamal’s case seems to go no further than the fact that he was born the day that Mumia shot Officer Daniel Faulkner. Fancome writes that he has "no idea" whether or not Mumia shot Officer Faulkner and there is no indication from either his writings or his website that he gives a damn. He is clearly interested in the intrigue of Mumia and not the facts of the case.

Like many other people enamored with Jamal, Francome made the pilgrimage to see the great Mumia where he resides on death row. Francome wrote of his nervousness and of being "overwhelmed" at meeting the convicted cop-killer. He writes about how "painful" it must be for Jamal to be in prison. A point that will no doubt be made in the film, one has to wonder however, how Maureen Faulkner’s pain will be conveyed.

Of course, what will likely be lacking in this latest hagiographical offering will not only be any
semblance of balance, but also intellectual curiosity.

The credited cast does not list anyone who will speak on behalf of Officer Faulkner and instead of featuring respected journalists or legal experts, the film is stacked with pro-Jamal activists and heroes of the far-left.

Alice Walker, Howard Zinn, and Noam Chomsky are all slated to be in the film and despite the fact that they are all prolific writers none of them have penned any work of significance about Jamal’s case.

So why are they even in the film? Ideology of course. They are "good" leftists, Mumia is a "good" leftist, therefore they will no doubt offer up self-serving platitudes, and slogans that are crafted for cheap applause, but will very likely not offer any new insights into the case.

In preparation for this article I asked William Francome via email for an interview and recieved this response:

"Yes I have read your blog and page before. I can't actually do interviews unless I given permission from the press agent for the film at the moment, but when things are moved forward, if you get back in touch I'd be happy to talk to you."

The smell of fear is in the air.


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