John Boyega has revealed what he has undergone as a Black Briton, the BBC reports.
Boyega tells the Radio Times, “I’ve been stopped and searched. And my dad, who was a Pentecostal minister, got stopped on the way back from church. I was little.”
“Everybody knows, especially if you grew up in Peckham [London], somebody who’s gone through the darkest scenarios with the police. I do. I know a few people.”
Boyega is among the stars of the anthology series from director Steve McQueen for Amazon Prime Video, titled “Small Axe”.
The miniseries comprises “five original films set from the late 1960s to the mid-1980s that tell personal stories from London’s West Indian community, whose lives have been shaped by their own force of will despite rampant racism and discrimination.” Inspired by actual events, the films showcase “ordinary people showing courage, belief, and resilience to overcome injustice and achieve something transformative in their West Indian community.”
In the series entry “Red, White and Blue”, Boyega plays police officer Leroy Logan, following the character’s attempts to reform the police force after seeing his own father assaulted by two officers.
One scene sees Logan discover racist graffiti on his locker while in a police changing room.
“I don’t remember filming that scene,” Boyega says. “I just remember fuming and being angry.
“I didn’t see the locker room or the locker door until those cameras were rolling. So that reaction was all natural to the character and the choices I thought he would make.”
Logan was appointed an MBE in 2001 for his contribution to policing before he retired in 2013 after 30 years of service.
“Small Axe” debuts on Friday, Nov. 20.