In a new interview, John Boyega—who’s among the stars of Steve McQueen’s BBC and Amazon Studios miniseries Small Axe—reflected on his experiences with racist police tactics.
In the series entry Red, White, and Blue, Boyega plays police officer Leroy Logan, who pushed for internal reform while facing racism.
“I’ve been stopped and searched,” Boyega told the Radio Times, per BBC News. “And my dad, who was a Pentecostal minister, got stopped on the way back from church. I was little.”
Boyega also revealed that filming one particular scene, during which Leroy discovers a racist message graffitied on his locker, was so emotional that he has no memory of it.
“Everybody knows, especially if you grew up in Peckham, somebody who’s gone through the darkest scenarios with the police,” Boyega said. “I do. I know a few people.”
The interview also sees Boyega looking back on his inspiring appearance at a Black Lives Matter demonstration in London over the summer. According to Boyega, he still believes his appearance at the protest—which included a filmed speech that went viral—could prove to be a hurdle for some casting directors in the future. However, it was more than worth it.
“You know that moment is going to go global and if I don’t get cast because people or casting directors feel like it’s too much friction for what they’re trying to do, it is what it is,” he said.
The five-film collection Small Axe hits Amazon Prime in the U.S. on Nov. 20 following its BBC One premiere. Above, peep the latest trailer.
John Boyega has been using his voice and platform to speak out hard this year, much respect.