After showing at the year’s top festivals, from Cannes to Toronto, Ken Burns‘ latest documentary, The Central Park Five, is finally ready to be unveiled next month — with even more controversy likely to be had. The project dives into the 1989 Central Park Jogger Case — in which five teens were tried and convicted of assaulting and raping a female jogger one night. As the case continued, faulty evidence and more unraveled, leading to an ongoing battle between the defendants and the prosecutors.
Directed with his daughter, Sarah, and David McMahon the film has caught fire with lawyers in New York, as they even attempt to subpoena notes and outtakes from the film. As the filmmakers fight back (along with the defendants, who are each asking for $50 million for damages resulting in this drawn out process), expect this to be one of the most vital documentaries of the year. After sharing an early trailer, check out an excellent new theatrical one thanks to Awards Daily, along with the official poster.
In 1989, five black and Latino teenagers from Harlem were arrested and later convicted of raping a white woman in New York City’s Central Park. They spent between six and 13 years in prison before a serial rapist confessed that he alone had committed the crime, resulting in their convictions being overturned.
Set against a backdrop of a decaying city beset by violence and racial tension, THE CENTRAL PARK FIVE tells the story of that horrific crime, the rush to judgment by the police, a media clamoring for sensational stories, an outraged public, and the five lives upended by this miscarriage of justice.
The Central Park Five hits theaters on November 23rd and is on VOD beginning on December 7th.