A movement offering more than 300, 000 free tickets to the Oscar-nominated film, “Selma,” is sweeping the country. The first of its kind program started in New York City with some African American business leaders creating a fund to send 27,000 students to see the critically acclaimed drama. The demand was so great that the fund grew to support 75,000 students.Then, the fund seriously ballooned as the movement spread to cities like Boston, Washington, D.C., Nashville, New Orleans, Dallas, Chicago, San Francisco and now the Los Angeles-Long Beach area, which includes Burbank.
Here in the Southland, all middle and high school students are eligible (7th-12th grade), according to Ashley Bodul at Paramount Pictures. Some of the leaders, prominent figures, and concerned citizens who contributed to the local “Selma For Students” program are:
Debra Martin Chase, CEO, Martin Chase Productions
Baron Davis, 2-Time NBA All-Star, Emmy nominated producer
John Green, VP and Associate General Counsel, DIRECTV
Robert Jon Hendricks, Partner, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
T. Warren Jackson, Senior Vice President, Associate General Counsel and Chief Ethics Officer, DIRECTV, and Jacqueline Phillips-Jackson, DGA Member
Debra Johnson, Chief Operating Officer, Metropolis IX
Charles King, CEO/Founder, MACRO
Mattie Lawson, President, The MML Group
Norman & Lyn Lear, The Lear Family Foundation
Duane Lyons, Partner, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP
Dale Mason Cochran, President, Concourse Ventures, Inc.
Dr. Accie Mitchell and Gloria Mitchell
Tendo Nagenda, Senior Vice President, Production, The Walt Disney Studios
Dr. Bob Ross, California Endowment
Nina Shaw, Partner, Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein & Lezcano
Janine Sherman Barrois, Executive Producer, “Criminal Minds”
“Selma” is about three months in 1965 when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a dangerous campaign for equal voting rights against a violent opposition bent on maintaining the racist rules of a segregated South. “Selma” has been nominated for Best Picture and Best Original Song for “Glory” by Common and John Legend.
” We are proud to be a part of this extraordinary effort to bring this poignant and timeless American story to the diverse students of Los Angeles,” said Debra Martin Chase, CEO, Martin Chase Productions, one of the local organizers, in a news release.
“As a filmmaker, I recognize the transformative power of film; that’s why the overwhelming response to the ‘SELMA‘ initiative here in Los Angeles and across the nation is so heartening. It’s a reminder of the importance of voting and civics engagement and demonstrates how anything can be accomplished through creativity and collective effort,” Chase added.
Paramount Pictures, the distributor of “SELMA,” is coordinating the programs with participating theaters. Here are the Southland theaters.
AMC Burbank 16 Burbank
AMC Del Amo 18 Torrance
Cinemark 18 & XD Westchester
Cinemark Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza 15 & Xtrem Los Angeles
Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26 & IMAX Long Beach
Pacific Lakewood 16 Lakewood
Pacific Winnetka 21 Chatsworth
Regal LA Live Stadium 14 Los Angeles
Eligible students need only show their current student ID or report card at the ticket window to get in free to see “Selma.” For groups of 25 or more go to Selmastudenttickets.com and click on group sales for information on the free tickets.