King Center screens film on CONTROVERSIAL civil Rights photographer

The King Center will screen a CNN documentary film, Pictures Don’t Lie, on Wednesday, February 16, 2011, at 6:30 p.m. at The King Center’s Freedom Hall Auditorium, 449 Auburn Ave. N.E. The free-of-charge screening (donations accepted) will be followed by a dialogue with the audience.

Pictures Don’t Lie explores the career of famed photographer Ernest Withers, who is known for his striking images of the Civil Rights movement, including photographs of the Little Rock Nine and Emmett Till. After his death the investigative work of journalists unearthed some evidence suggesting that Withers was a paid informant for the FBI—one of several in the agency’s “Ghetto Informant Program”. The film interviews several people who worked closely with Withers, as well as some of his children, who maintain their father’s innocence, fellow journalists and some of the civil rights icons whom Withers allegedly spied on.

The program will include appearances by CNN senior producer Cameo George and Fulton County Sheriff Theodore Jackson. In the film, CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien interviews several leading figures from the Civil Rights Era as well as scholars and former FBI agents to investigate whether Withers, a hometown hero, was a paid informant in the city that Dr. King was gunned down.  Pictures Don’t Lie will premiere on CNN networks nationally February 20, 2011 at 8:00pm ET.

The Screen the Dream series features films that address key tenets of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s teachings concerning poverty, human rights, bigotry and nonviolence. Through a combination of groundbreaking documentaries and post-film discussions with local thought-leaders, Screen the Dream leverages the power of film to educate Atlantans on the continued relevancy of Kingian philosophy to current moral and social crises.

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