Whoopi Goldberg will star in an upcoming movie on the mother of Emmett Till. Till will focus on Mamie Till-Mobley and how she devoted her life to seeking justice for her 14-year-old son Emmett Till, who was murdered by racists in Mississippi in 1955 after being accused of whistling at a White woman. Danielle Deadwyler will portray Mamie Till-Mobley, while Goldberg will play Till’s grandmother, Alma Carthan. Goldberg is also a producer on the film.
“We have waited a very long time to bring this historically necessary important film to people. And as we watch the repression of American History when it comes to people of color it makes it even that more important,” the Sister Act actress told Variety.
Till chronicles Mamie’s decision to have an open casket at Emmett’s funeral and to allow Jet magazine to publish David Jackson’s funeral photos, in order to ensure people everywhere saw the true horrors of her son’s murder. The decision from the grieving mother was a galvanizing moment that contributed to the creation of the civil rights movement.
“It is a gift to learn the legacy and intimacies of our ancestors, those familial and communal, as is the life of Mamie Till-Mobley, a public leader and mother of the movement. I am charged with humility and great will to embody her life at such an integral moment of personal tragedy and political rebellion, a boon to the civil rights movement, and to represent the joy in the love and life shared between Mamie Till and her beloved Emmett Till,” Deadwyler also told Variety.
Till will be directed by African American female director Chinonye Chukwu. Her previous film, Clemency, which starred Alfre Woodard and Aldis Hodge, won the Sundance grand jury prize in 2019.