Betty Anne Waters spent ten years acquiring the education and credentials — including a GED, a bachelor’s, a master’s and finally a law degree — necessary to personally exonerate her wrongfully convicted brother, Kenny. Prior to that, she had already waited about ten years from his imprisonment for murder to the point when she went went back to school with the intent of ultimately defending his innocence. So, she must have faith that things come out right in time. But she still didn’t expect the movie about her life and legal triumph to also take almost another decade. That film, “Conviction” is now about to open theaters (in limited release starting October 15), nine years and four months after Kenny became a free man. And we’ve got an exclusive clip of Waters chatting with director Tony Goldwyn about this lengthy production process and how the financial crisis nearly killed the project completely. And how he kept this little secret from Waters, the cast and the crew.
I haven’t yet seen the drama, which stars Hilary Swank as Betty and Sam Rockwell as Kenny, but I’ve heard good things, especially about Rockwell (please give this guy at least an Oscar nomination already). I’m sure it’s uplifting and moving and particularly inspiring to any innocent person deserving of exoneration or a family member looking to pass the bar on his or her behalf. Likewise, Goldwyn’s relentless pursuit to get the Waters’ story to the big screen is also uplifting and moving and particularly inspiring to any filmmaker struggling to get funding and/or a start date, no matter how long it’s seeming to take. Of course, it helps a bit to have a touching true story that needs to be told and a really great cast, which for “Conviction” also includes Melissa Leo and Juliette Lewis.
Watch the video of the conversation after the jump.