Coming off his first Academy Award nomination for film editing (BlacKkKlansman), Barry Alexander Brown will next direct his first feature film Son of the South, with principal photography in Montgomery, Alabama beginning this March. Brown also wrote the screenplay. Spike Lee executive produces the film with Brown, his longtime editor. Their last collaboration, BlacKkKlansman, recently garnered six Academy Award nominations including Best Picture and Best Director.
Producing the film will be Colin Bates (Maggie, Kidnap) Eve Pomerance (As Good As Dead) Bill Black (Bayou Caviar) Stan Erdreich, River Bend Pictures (Coming Through The Rye)
Son of the South is based on the autobiography The Wrong Side Of Murder Creek by Bob Zellner, an Alabama native and grandson of a Birmingham Klansman. This is the tale of his summer of change – from good ol’ boy outsider to one who is pulled into the very center of the civil rights movement. The events of the spring and summer of ’61 challenged this 22-year-old white Southerner to rethink his beliefs as he witnessed the heroism of John Lewis during the Montgomery Freedom Riders riot in May ’61. He was inspired by the people whose paths he crossed that year – Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr, Rosa Parks and Virginia Durr and invigorated by the courage of local black high school students marching to protest the murder of tenant farmer Herbert Lee, outraged that a man could be killed with impunity for the crime of attempting to register to vote. As Rosa Parks once told Bob, “Something bad will happen in front of you one day and not choosing is a choice.” It’s the story of someone fighting against social injustice, repression, and violence – someone who transformed himself in order to help change the world.
Son of the South writer/director Brown is originally from Montgomery where he started his career in community theater and is also the location where the story’s actual events took place.
Lee and Brown’s collaboration goes back to She’s Gotta Have It, Do The Right Thing, Malcolm X, The 25th Hour and Inside Man. In addition to his many editor credits, Barry Alexander Brown co-directed the Academy Award nominated documentary The War At Home.