Now available on VOD, the film The 24th couldn’t have been released in a more relevant modern context. On the heels of protests for racial justice taking place every day nationwide, the film follows the story of the Houston riot of 1917. The riot involved the all-black 24th US Infantry Regiment and occurred in response to the racist policing running rampant from the Houston Police Department.
Best known for his work on Empire, Trai Byers not only stars in The 24th but co-wrote the screenplay as well. In a conversation with The Knockturnal this week, Byers says he’s not afraid of any controversy that the events portrayed in the new movie might cause. Unlike the marches depicted in his 2014 film Selma, the demonstrations against injustice in The 24th aren’t so peaceful, however, Byers welcomes any conversations that the movie might trigger.
“Because of what we’re dealing within the film, it’s the reason it was [majorly] swept under the rug. I knew that people would deal with this thing a little more controversially, and seeing that the soldiers responded to racism violently, whereas in Selma they’re walking across Edmund Pettus Bridge peacefully. They’re two different stories but they’re authentic, it’s just how you receive them today.”
Check out the full conversation above!