It's been announced that Doug Liman (Bourne Identity, Swingers) will produce and direct a new film based on the famous 1971 Attica state prison rebellion, titled Attica. This is the story of the most violent and bloody prison uprising in U.S. history. There's no doubt that this story will make for a fantastic movie if it's executed properly.
This is a personal film for Liman. His father was a big shot NYC attorney who served as chief counsel to the New York State Special Commission on Attica Prison and co-authored the Commission’s searing report. Liman says,
My father’s report literally reads like a page turner. It is filled with stories of guards and prisoners from vastly different backgrounds learning to trust each other in the face of real human tragedy.
The script was written by Academy Award nominee Geoffrey Fletcher (Precious), and the story will take place from inside the prison. Here is a little description of what went down at the prison and what it was that sparked the riot.
The Attica Prison riot occurred at the Attica Correctional Facility in Attica, New York, United States in 1971. The riot was based in part upon prisoners' demands for better living conditions. At the time, inmates were given one shower per week and one roll of toilet paper per month. On September 9, 1971, responding to the death of prisoner George Jackson, a black radical prisoner who had been shot to death by corrections officers in California's San Quentin Prison on August 21st while armed and attempting to escape, about 1,000 of the prison's approximately 2,200 prisoners rioted and seized control of the prison, taking thirty-three correction officers hostage. The State began negotiating with the prisoners. During the following four days of negotiations, authorities agreed to 28 of the prisoners' demands, but would not agree to demands for complete amnesty from criminal prosecution for the prison takeover, or for the removal of Attica's superintendent. Under order of then Governor Nelson Rockefeller, state police took back control of the prison. When the uprising was over at least 39 people were dead, including ten correction officers and civilian employees.
There are a few great documentaries on this famous prison riot that have been shown on the History Channel and are definitely worth watching if you get the opportunity.
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