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‘Delia’s Gone’ star embraces role that challenges thoughts on timely themes

Genelle Williams takes on role as troubled sibling in new murder mystery film
'Delia’s Gone' star embraces role that challenges thoughts on timely themes
Actress Genelle Williams, Photo by Karolina Turek Photography

Actress Genelle Williams has been working steadily as a lead or series regular playing Lucy on the NBC series Family Law. She is also in Lionsgate’s feature film, Spiral in the role of Lisa Banks with Chris Rock and Samuel L. Jackson. Her latest project, Delia’s Gone, written, and directed by Robert Budreau, follows the story of a Black man with an intellectual disability, portrayed by Stephan James, who is wrongfully accused and incarcerated for the murder of his sister Delia, played by Williams. Delia’s Gone explore premises of race, gender violence and mental disability.

How is playing Delia different from your past roles? What attracted you to the role of Delia?
There were several things that attracted me to the role of Delia. She’s fiercely protective of her brother, she’s strong minded and hardworking regardless of her personal issues. The main difference for me with Delia from past roles was notably her addiction issues and her vices. They don’t necessarily consume her, but they influence her life.

 The film touches on many timely themes, including how race and mental health are treated in the criminal justice system. Why was it important for you to participate in a film like this?
It meant a lot to me to be a part of a film that seamlessly bridges art with social impact. Not only does the film do a great job of igniting conversations around race, criminal justice, and mental health but the hope is that it will also spur action in our communities. Delia’s Gone is a call to action and I knew I wanted to be a part of a project that could spark dialogue and change. I’m thankful Robert Budreau allowed me to take part in his film.

The film features a stellar cast. What was it like on set working alongside your co-stars?
How incredible is our cast?! I felt incredibly honored to be able to take part in a film with such an incredibly talented group of people. I have been wanting to work with Stephan for years now and I feel very lucky that I was able to witness his incredible work in this film.

What’s next for you? What type of roles will you be pursuing in the future?
I am currently filming the third season of our show Family Law out in Vancouver. It will be coming to the US this fall on CW. I’m hoping that I can keep pursuing thought provoking roles that challenge me and speak to audiences.

Delia’s Gone is scheduled to open with limited engagements. Please check listings for times and theaters

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