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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Interview: Gina Prince-Bythewood Talks SHOTS FIRED and Telling the Story of the America You Don't Normally See on TV

Gina Prince-Bythewood and a scene from Shots Fired featuring DeWanda Wise

If you haven't been watching SHOTS FIRED on Fox, then you've been missing out on one of the smartest, timely, and fascinating shows on television right now (outside of ABC's American Crime, which was just brutally canceled for no reason at all). Set in Charlotte, North Carolina, the narrative kicks off with the murders of a young black man and a young white man at the hands of police. Through that impetus, it tells the story of criminal justice, police misconduct, civil unrest, and race.

In just nine episodes, the series, co-created by writer/director Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball, Beyond the Lights), has explored what social justice looks like in the modern era, the role of the black church, local government corruption, and more, seamlessly. And on top of all that, it has one of the best casts on TV: Sanaa Lathan and Stephen James as the officers called to Charlotte in response to the murders, DeWanda Wise and Jill Hennessy as the mothers of the two men killed, the amazing Aisha Hinds as the respected pastor of the local church, Helen Hunt as the governor (yes, a woman governor!), Stephen Moyer as a police lieutenant, and Tristan Wilds as the sheriff deputy accused of killing an unarmed young white man. And that's not even everyone. Did I mention Richard Dreyfuss is also on the show too?

With the series finale of this limited television event coming up Wednesday, May 23, we caught up with Prince-Bythewood to talk about the inspiration behind the show, its phenomenal soundtrack, political statement, and working with some of the best talent Hollywood has yet to truly recognize on Sunday's Cinema in Noir podcast. Tune in below. The interview begins at the :30 minute mark.

Don't miss the highly anticipated finale of SHOTS FIRED Wednesday, May 23 at 8pm on FOX.


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