Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams will make his directorial debut with Till, a film about Mamie Elizabeth Till-Mobley, the mother of Emmett Till, an African American teenager who was lynched in 1955 after being accused of flirting with a white woman.
The movie will focus on Till-Mobley’s search for justice following the murder of her 14-year-old son in Jim Crow-era Mississippi, reports Variety.
His murder was viewed as the catalyst for the next phase of the civil rights movement, and Till-Mobley famously insisted on an open-casket ceremony so her son’s mutilated body could be in full view and bring awareness to the cost of racially charged violence and the cruelty of lynching.
Williams is directing from a screenplay by Michael Reilly and civil rights filmmaker Keith A Beauchamp.
The movie is based on Beauchamp’s 2005 documentary The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till, which led the United States Department of Justice to reopen the Till case in 2004.
Williams will produce the film with actress Whoopi Goldberg, who will also appear in the project. Production is expected to start next summer with the support of the Till family.
Several movies and a mini-series are also in the works about Emmett Till.