John Boyega has remembered a time when he was younger when his father was stopped by police while making his way home from church.
The Star Wars actor, 28, has been speaking out against racial inequality in recent months and threw his support behind the Black Lives Matter movement, following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, earlier this year.
The movie talent is set to play Metropolitan Police officer and anti-racism reformer Leroy Logan in new series Small Axe and opening up on his own experience with the police, Boyega revealed he has been stopped and searched by officers.
In an interview with Radio Times, he recalled: ‘I’ve been stopped and searched. And my dad, who was a Pentecostal minister, got stopped on the way back from church, I was little.
‘Everybody knows, especially if you grew up in Peckham, somebody who’s gone through the darkest scenarios with the police. I do. I know a few people.’
browser that supports HTML5
Boyega’s Small Axe episode Red, White and Blue, addresses police brutality as it follows the real life story of Logan, a young forensic scientist, who is compelled to join the police after witnessing his father being attacked by two officers.
Logan was awarded an MBE for his contribution to policing in 2001 and he later retired in 2013 after 30 years of service.
Boyega continues to campaign, both onscreen and offscreen, for an end to racial injustice and won’t be deterred from speaking out, even if it could cost him being cast by directors in upcoming projects.
Reflecting on his BLM speech in Hyde Park in June, Boyega said: ‘When I was expressing my truth, in my anger, I was like, everyone’s going to see this. I said that, knowing there are helicopters above me.
‘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… then it is what it is.’
‘It was just me in that moment. It was just the intensity of the time and what was bubbling in our global community,’ he said. ‘To speak out wasn’t a strategic move. It just happened, really.’
During his speech, Boyega suggested that he may not have a career after speaking out so publicly as he told crowds gathered: ‘I’m speaking to you from my heart. Look, I don’t know if I’m going to have a career after this, but f*** that.
He continued: ‘I need you to understand how painful this sh*t is. I need you to understand how painful it is to be reminded every day that your race means nothing and that isn’t the case anymore, that was never the case anymore.
‘Black lives have always mattered. We have always been important. We have always meant something. We have always succeeded regardless. And now is the time. I ain’t waiting.’
Got a story?
If you’ve got a celebrity story, video or pictures get in touch with the Metro.co.uk entertainment team by emailing us email@example.com, calling 020 3615 2145 or by visiting our Submit Stuff page – we’d love to hear from you.