EXCLUSIVE | 'A Day to Die' maker Wes Miller says hate crimes happen due to 'no accountability'
Before starting a career in filmmaking, Wes Miller worked as a civil rights lawyer and practiced law for several years. However, movies were an integral part of his life and whenever he wanted some motivation, he would watch his favorite films. As a member of the African-American community and a civil rights lawyer, he has seen a lot of movements like Black Lives Matter closely and studied them as well.
One of his earlier movies, 'River Runs Red', discussed the same issue and featured a storyline that focused on minorities. However, his latest movie 'A Day to Die' talks about other issues as well and sees two different kinds of worlds that are really divisive. While speaking exclusively to MEAWW about tackling relevant issues, Miller said that he wanted to let the viewers know what these characters are "going through" in their lives and how their worlds resonate with the world that people live in nowadays.
"What happened was when I went into a re-write, I asked myself what are these characters going through and what’s missing. That’s when I came up with the Leon character and when this character came to life, it set up a really interesting dynamic between his world and the world of our protagonist. It saw the clashing of two different worlds which kind of resonates with the world we live in. We are so divisive right now, but there comes a time when we have to put our differences aside and attack a common evil," Miller said.
The acclaimed filmmaker also opened up about the struggles that the African-American community has to go through on a daily basis and said hate crimes continue to happen because there is no "accountability", adding, "It still happens because it’s engraved in the social DNA of our country. You gotta remember that my grandmother was alive when she could not drink from the same water fountain that was for Caucasians."
"This is still recent history and as much as America as a country attempts to bury the history or distance itself from the history, they need to realize that the distance isn’t that far. Then, you have the social class system that is always going to perpetuate the differences. Also, when you have officers or people of power with no accountability, these instances will continue to happen," said Miller.
Miller believes that the only way to move forward is to "put aside" the partisan politics and "work together with a common-sense approach".
As far as the movie is concerned, 'A Day to Die' has been released in theatres and is available on VOD services as well. The movie, which stars Bruce Willis, Frank Grillo, Kevin Dillon, and Leon in pivotal roles, currently has an audience rating of 97% on Rotten Tomatoes.