Meet the secret heroes of the civil rights movement

Civil Rights Movement history


In the coming weeks, Selma will roll into more than 27,000 classrooms around the country, free of charge.

But it’s not the Oscar-nominated, Oprah Winfrey-backed film.

This version, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), which produced the film, showcases the true stars of the civil rights movement in Alabama: the students.

“Their story is often forgotten,” said SPLC President Richard Cohen, who served as executive producer on the film, during a phone interview.

While the Hollywood film focuses primarily on Martin Luther King Jr. and President Lyndon B. Johnson, Selma: The Bridge to the Ballot shines a light on the students and teachers who worked for equal rights every day, in the face of constant opposition.

The 40-minute documentary uses grainy historic footage and first-hand interviews conducted over the last several years with students involved in the fight to describe the events leading up to and following Bloody…

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