The Story of Michael X

Film screening and discussion

Sun 24 May 2015

The Story of Michael X

Film screening and discussion

Sun 24 May 2015,

This revelatory 1972 BBC exposé focuses on Michael X, a charismatic leader of black radicalism in the late 60s who, at the time, was one of the most famous black men in Britain. Michael consciously modelled himself on Malcolm X, renaming himself from Michael De Freitas and setting out to challenge what he thought were the hypocrises of white power and expose the inequalities its supremacy was built on.

His extraordinary but almost forgotten story has to be seen to be believed – a hustler from Trinidad who could pass for white, he conquered swinging London, cosying up to everyone from Muhammad Ali to Leonard Cohen, William Burroughs to John Lennon. He was a piratical, larger than life character who was the man of the moment for a while – before he fell victim to his own hype. He moved back to Trinidad, started a commune and dreamed of becoming President – that is, until two bodies were found on his land…

Director: Gordan Carr
45 minutes, 1972

The film screening will be followed by a discussion hosted by curator Ian Sergeant with John L Williams, author of Michael X: A Life in Black and White.

Part of Come the Revolution… a series of screenings, discussions and special events to mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of minister, author, self-made man, political activist and civil rights leader – the complex, controversial and charismatic Malcolm X.

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