Directed by Nancy Buirski, The Loving Story centers on a real-life story of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple living in the state of Virginia where interracial coupling was illegal, and their struggles, including the US Supreme Court case named after them – Loving vs Virginia (1967), the landmark civil rights case in which the United States Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, declared Virginia’s anti-miscegenation statute, unconstitutional, overturning existing laws and bringing an official end to all race-based restrictions on marriage in the United States.
Persecuted by a local sheriff, the Lovings were found guilty of violating Virginia’s law against interracial marriage and forced to leave the state. But Mildred Loving chose to fight. She wrote a letter to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy asking for help. He referred her to the ACLU and two young attorneys took the case.
Drawing on extensive archival footage, and on contemporary interviews with the family and the attorneys, the film vividly brings a monumental court case to life.
The film was shortlisted for the Best Documentary Feature Oscar.
The HBO co-production, which toured the film festival circuit over the last year, debuted on HBO in February 2012; and will now get a limited US theatrical run in New York City, at Maysles Cinema, December 10-16, 2012.
“The perfect place for The Loving Story to make its U.S. theatrical premiere is at The Maysles Cinema,” states Program Director Jessica Green. “The history of race equality and marriage equality is ideally explored and discussed in one of the most diverse and politically engaged neighborhoods in the world, at a serious all-documentary cinema with an audience like no other.”
This program is part of a bi-monthly Maysles Cinema series, Documentary in Bloom: New Films, presented by Livia Bloom, which highlights challenging, controversial, and thought-provoking new documentaries of outstanding artistic merit.
Watch this 1967 4-minute report on the couple’s case (and underneath you’ll find the trailer):
And here’s the doc’s trailer: