June 18--"Fruitvale Station," the critically-acclaimed film about the 2009 killing of Oscar Grant III, will be shown at a private screening Thursday night at the Grand Lake Theatre in Oakland.
The special screening, presented by the San Francisco Film Society and the Oscar Grant Foundation, is only open to invited guests. The film, directed by Oakland native Ryan Coogler, is slated to open in select theaters nationwide July 12.
The Hollywood stars will be in town for Thursday's screening, including Michael B. Jordan who plays Grant, Academy Award-winner Octavia Spencer, Melonie Diaz, Ahna O'Reilly, director Ryan Coogler, producers Forest Whitaker and Nina Yang Bongiovi.
In near neo-realistic fashion, the movie, filmed on the streets of the East Bay, traces Grant's last hours before the unarmed 22-year-old Hayward man was shot on the BART platform at the Fruitvale station by then-BART police officer Johannes Mehserle in the early hours of New Year's Day 2009. Mehserle was charged with murder, but a Los Angeles jury found him guilty of involuntary manslaughter and he served roughly 11 months in jail. The killing and ensuing legal findings sparked several riots in downtown Oakland during the following months.
In January, "Fruitvale Station" took home the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award for U.S. dramatic film at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. And the film is considered a likely contender for this year's Academy Award nominations.
Pitt's "Moneyball", also filmed in Oakland, got similar treatment with a star-studded premiere at the Paramount Theatre before its general release in 2011.
Follow Angela Hill at Twitter.com/giveemhill.
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