Shaun Parkes and Malachi Kirby Talk Police Brutality in Amazon Prime’s Small Axe: Mangrove [Exclusive Interview]

Shaun Parkes Malachi Kirby
Shaun Parkes and Malachi Kirby star in Amazon Prime’s Small Axe: Mangrove

After fifty years later, nothing changed for the relationship between the police force and black communities.

The story of the Mangrove Nine in 1970 shook the British news with a group of British black activists charged for inciting a riot at a protest. The trial lasted for 55 days, in which it challenged the legitimacy of the judicial process and brought awareness of racial hatred within the Metropolitan Police.

From acclaimed director Steve McQueen, he created the Small Axe anthology films that highlighted the lives and culture of the British community. The first film of the series called Small Axe: Mangrove brought the story of the Mangrove Nine on to the small screen.

The film stars Letitia Wright (Black Panther), Shaun Parkes (The Mummy Returns), and Malachi Kirby (Curfew).

Here’s the official synopsis:

In the late 60s, Frank Crichlow, the Trinidad-born owner of a café in Notting Hill, London, increasingly found himself and his establishment the targets of white police intimidation and brutality. A meeting place for the local West Indian community as well as the area’s Black activists and intellectuals, the Mangrove restaurant was raided numerous times without any evidence of illegal activity. Finally, the fed-up community took to the streets in protest, resulting in the arrests and violent treatment of several demonstrators.

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LRM Online’s Gig Patta spoke with actors Shaun Parkes and Malachi Kirby. We discussed the timelessness of the subject that relates to history today.

Shaun Parkes caught the acting bug at a very young age. At 16, he enrolled at Seltec College to study drama, and then a couple of years later—he was accepted into The Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA). He played parts in multiple television series, such as Crown Prosecutor, Turning World, and Casualty. Then his biggest break came with playing Koop in Human Traffic that starred John Simm, Lorraine Pilkington, and Danny Dyer. Recently, he appeared in films such as The Mummy Returns, Clubbed, and Notes.

Malachi Kirby starred in several remarkable television shows. In 2016, he played Kunta Kinte in the History Channel’s Roots that was nominated for multiple Primetime Emmys. He starred in an episode of Black Mirror called “Men Against Fire.” Most recently, he was in the television series Devils for Syfy and Curfew.

Amazon Prime’s Small Axe: Mangrove premieres tomorrow, October 19.

Watch the exclusive interview below. Let us know what you think.

Source: LRM Online Exclusive, Amazon Prime

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