Boston actors perform in Charles Murray’s ‘#Truth’
Boston-native actors Elimu Nelson of ABC’s “The Rookie” and Michael Beach of “If Beale Street Could Talk,” knew they would perform in Charles Murray’s film “#Truth” before they even read the script. The level of trust and respect between the three creators is so strong the actors were willing to do the film sight unseen.
They were not disappointed. “#Truth” follows Stewart Cooper, who reels in the wake of his cousin’s suicide after she experiences social media shaming. When it’s revealed that the affair she was being shamed for was with her church pastor, Cooper turns the tables on the man of God. In a contemporary moment when “fake news” and Internet bullying are ever-present concerns, #Truth delves into potent, sensitive plotlines.
“Nowadays we get information so quickly,” says Nelson, who plays a detective investigating the suicide. “This takes it to the worst place that it could go in terms of social media and the fallout. It’s extremely tangible and extremely relatable.” Nelson says he also was enthusiastic about the production for its portrayal of the black church as one with flaws and multitudes, rather than the caricature of gospel music and attitude that it’s often reduced to.
The Roxbury International Film Festival will be screening the film on Thursday, Oct. 10 at the Museum of Fine Arts. Nelson will be in attendance at the event for a Q&A with the audience after the screening. “#Truth” debuted in February of this year at the Pan-African Film and Arts Festival. Director and writer Charles Murray was given a 2017 Image Award by the NAACP for outstanding writing in a motion picture (television) and in 2013, won best screenplay at the American Black Film Festival.
Beach won’t be able to attend the Oct. 10 screening, but his hometown pride remains strong. “I love the idea that films I’m a part of sometimes get to play specifically in Roxbury at RoxFilm because it’s home. It’s where I started,” he says. “Festivals like RoxFilm help facilitate people’s hopes and dreams from places like Roxbury and Dorchester, and they need to be frequented and promoted.”
Nelson says that despite the very real problems depicted in the film, he hopes it allows viewers to escape into a fictional world for a short time. “The two or so hours that I’m watching a film, I hope to be taken completely inside of it and register an experience,” he says. “That’s what I hope people take away from it.”