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Charleston Church Shooting Documentary ‘Emanuel’ Revisits Tragedy

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NBA star Steph Curry and actresses Mariska Hargitay and Viola Davis have teamed up to bring a documentary about the tragic 2015 Charleston church shooting to theaters for a limited run.

“Emanuel” revisits the mass killing of nine African-American worshippers gathered for prayer and Bible study at the historically Black A.M.E. church in South Carolina on June 17, 2015. The 21-year-old gunman, Dylann Roof, was identified as a white supremacist who carried out the act in hopes of starting a race war.

Roof, serving nine consecutive life sentences, killed: pastor and State Sen. Clementa C. Pinckney (41); Cynthia Marie Graham Hurd (54); Susie Jackson (87); Ethel Lee Lance (70); Depayne Middleton-Doctor (49); Tywanza Sanders (26); Daniel L. Simmons (74); Sharonda Coleman-Singleton (45); and Myra Thompson (59).

In addition to exploring the lives of those brutally murdered, the “Emanuel” documentary sheds light on how survivors have coped with their tragic loss. Inspired by their Christian faith, survivors have expressed forgiveness toward Roof. However, the mass murderer has yet to express any remorse for the lives he took and the suffering he caused.

The Charleston church shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church was also a turning point for many, as the hate crime exposed the reality of white supremacist attitudes still plaguing the nation.

The 90-minute documentary was scheduled for theatrical release for just two days, June 17 and June 19, via Fathom Events. Viewers can purchase tickets online.

According to promotional materials provided for the film: “Emanuel” was made in direct partnership with the City of Charleston and the families affected by the tragedy. The producers of the documentary will donate their share of profits from the film to the survivors of the shooting and the families of the victims.

Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors and award-winning actress Viola Davis serve as executive producers. “Law and Order” star Mariska Hargitay serves as co-producer while Brian Ivie of “The Dropbox” directs the documentary. Read full credits for “Emanuel” at

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Faithfully Magazine is a fresh, bold and exciting news and culture publication that covers issues, conversations and events impacting Christian communities of color.


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