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Watch Jay Z’s Press Conference Announcing The Kalief Browder Story


Following last week’s announcement of the new partnership between Jay Z and The Weinstein Company, Jay and Harvey Weinstein today held a press conference to announce the upcoming premiere of the first project to come from the deal, TIME: The Kalief Browder Story. The 6-part docuseries is set to debut on the Spike network in January and will closely examine the story of Bronx teenager Kalief Browder and the horrors visited upon him by New York City’s broken criminal justice system.

If you’re unfamiliar with Kalief’s story, you can read up on it here and here, but the gist of it is that this young man was arrested for a minor crime that he did not commit and ended up imprisoned on Rikers Island for three years. As so often happens in NYC’s most notorious jail, Browder was assaulted by both the corrections officers tasked with watching over him and his fellow inmates. Upon his release, he struggled with the pain of his experience and ultimately took his own life.

Jay actually met with Kalief after his release from prison and he talks about that experience and how it makes this story so personal for him during the meeting with the press. Kalief’s mother also speaks about her son and praises the work being done by the Stop Solitary for Kids organization. “I’m very thankful that this series is aligning itself with the work of the organization,” she told the reporters. “It’s unfortunately too late for my son, Kalief, but it will definitely benefit other youths, so that they won’t have to endure what my son did.”

After their remarks, the panel takes questions and Jay is specifically asked about the plague of police violence against African-American men (14:00). I’m not crazy about his answer, which criticized the use of body cameras by law enforcement officers, but I understand his larger point. I just don’t believe we’ll be at a point where we can put that much trust in law enforcement anytime soon. He was also asked about the presidential election and gave a vague answer about hope rather than endorsing a particular candidate, which I took as him trying to avoid turning the event into a political discussion.

Watch the full press conference below.

Fun fact: the series was actually written by Nick Sandow, or as you may know him, Joe Caputo from Orange Is the New Black.

Previously: Jay Z Narrates Anti-Drug War Short Film

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One Response to “Watch Jay Z’s Press Conference Announcing The Kalief Browder Story

  1. King James Says:

    Eskay, post that Nate Parker breakfast club interview

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