On June 17, 2015, Dylan Roof, a white supremacist gunman entered the Emanuel A.M.E. church in Charleston, Virginia and took the lives of nine of its members: Rev. Clementa C. Pinkney, Cynthia Marie Graham Hurd, Susie Jackson, Ethel Lee Lance, Depayne Middleton Doctor, Tywanza Sanders, Rev. Daniel L. Simmons, Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton and Myra Thompson. As America nears the four-year anniversary of this tragedy, Viola Davis and Stephen Curry have teamed up to tell the events surrounding the shooting.
Both Davis and Curry will executive produce the documentary, Emanuel. The documentary will be produced by Steph Curry under Unanimous Media and Viola Davis and Julius Tennon under JuVee Productions. In addition, Brian Ivie will direct and Law and Order: SVU star Mariska Hargitay will serve as co-producer.
As evident in the trailer, Emanuel will document the Charleston shooting through the lens of those most affected by it: the survivors and the family members of the deceased. The documentary will also chronicle the stunning act of forgiveness that followed in the aftermath of the shooting.
“The documentary highlights how a horrible tragedy can bring a community together and spreads an important message about the power of forgiveness,” Curry said in a statement. “Stories like this are the reason we created Unanimous and entered the entertainment space. I hope the film inspires others like it does me.”
Emanuel will open nationwide for a limited run on June 17, the four-year anniversary of the Charleston massacre, and June 19, only through Fantom Events. All profits toward the film will go to the survivors of the shooting as well as the victims' families.
Watch the harrowing first trailer for Emanuel below.