Judas and The Black Messiah is a film about Fred Hampton, the Chairman of the Illinois Black Panther Party. Hampton, betrayed by FBI informant William O’Neal, sets up the conflict for the movie. The film opens on February 12, 2021 on HBO Max as well as theaters. The project originally had an August 2020 release. The COVID-19 pandemic derailed the original release for the film.
The film stars Daniel Kaluuya as Fred Hampton who served as the chairman of The Black Panther Party until his assassination in 1969. LaKeith Stanfield stars as the backstabber, Wiliam O’Neal who infiltrated the Black Panther Party and betrayed Hampton in order to avoid jail time. Martin Sheen stars as the controversial historical figure, J. Edgar Hoover, FBI Director.
You can kill a revolutionary but you can’t kill a revolution.
Shaka King is directing and produced the project with Black Panther‘s Ryan Coogler and Charles D. King.
Judas and The Black Messiah will be pushed during awards season. The feature also stars Ashton Sanders, Algee Smith, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Dominique Thorne, Amari Cheatom, Caleb Earnhardt and Lil Rel Howery.
Black Panther Party Historical Facts:
The Black Panther Party was founded by Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton in October 1966 in Oakland, California. The organization’s original name was Black Panther Party for Self-Defense. Active from 1966 until 1982, the party had numerous chapters across the United States and several chapters in the United Kingdom. In 1969, the director of the FBI, J. Edgar Hoover described The Black Panther Party as “the greatest threat to the internal security of the country.”
Membership in the Black Panther Party reached its peak in 1970 with offices in 68 cities and thousands of members. Seale and Newton were college students when they founded the party.
Huey P. Newton was murdered on August 22, 1989 by Tyrone Robinson, who confessed the murder to police. Bobby Seale was one of the original Chicago Eight charged by the US federal government with conspiracy charges. Their charges were related to anti-Vietnam War protests in Chicago, Illinois, during the 1968 Democratic National Convention.