Co-written by University of Texas graduate Andrew Lanham, the fact-based legal drama Just Mercy stars Michael B. Jordan as a young defense attorney fighting to prove the innocence of an African-American Death Row convict wrongly accused of murder. Jordan plays Bryan Stevenson, a social justice activist who moves to Alabama to cofound the Equal Justice Initiative. He quickly takes on the case of Walter McMillian, who was sentenced to death for the 1986 murder of a 18-year-old white woman, Ronda Morrison, in Monroeville, Al., despite eyewitnesses placing him at a church event at the time of Morrison’s fatal shooting. Jamie Foxx stars as McMillian. The supporting cast includes Brie Larson as Equal Justice Initiative cofounder Eva Ansley, Rafe Spall as district attorney Tommy Chapman, and Tim Blake Nelson as Ralph Myers, the career criminal who initially testified that McMillian killed Morrison. Just Mercy, which premiered locally during this year’s Austin Film Festival, opened Jan. 10 in Austin. Andrew Lanham, a University of Texas Michener Graduate, adapted Bryan Stevenson’s memoirs “Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption” with director Destin Daniel Cretton. Lanham and Cretton previously collaborated on 2017’s The Glass Castle. Lanham also wrote the Vincent D'Onofrio-directed The Kid and co-wrote 2017’s spiritual drama The Shack.
Aired: Jan. 9, 2019.