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Emilio Estevez and Alec Baldwin shine a light on homelessness in new film

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on April 2, 2019 - Duration: 02:34s

Emilio Estevez and Alec Baldwin shine a light on homelessness in new film

Writer-director Estevez got the idea for the film after reading a news article about how libraries had become de facto homeless centers and librarians de facto social workers and first responders.

Rough cut (no reporter narration).

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Emilio Estevez and Alec Baldwin shine a light on homelessness in new film

ROUGH CUT.

NO REPORTER NARRATION.

Emilio Estevez brings the issues of homelessness and mental illness to light with his new film, "The Public" all while celebrating librarians and the city of Cincinnati, Ohio.

The veteran filmmaker assembled an all-star cast including Gabrielle Union who plays a reporter, Taylor Schilling and Alec Baldwin.

"When he told me that he wanted me to play this part I didn't really think about the part.

You know, I mean I knew he is a hostage negotiator or crisis negotiator, I was totally cool with that.

I wanted to be around him and shoot," said Baldwin.

Estevez got the idea for the film after reading a news article about how libraries had become de facto homeless centers and librarians de facto social workers and first responders.

"What would this story look like if the patrons said, 'hang on, we're not going to leave?

We're going - it's an unusually cold night, we're going to stage an old fashioned 60s sit-in.'

And they do," said the actor.

"How would the media respond, how would politicians respond, might they use it to change the narrative for their own political gain?

How would law enforcement react, would they continue to criminalize the poor and the marginalized that often seek refuge in libraries for shelter?

So, how would that play out and the story began to take shape," he added.

Michael K.

Williams, plays one of the homeless men in the movie and said the experience has helped him to put a human face of the issue of homelessness.

"The main thing I took away from this is that I remember to acknowledge people when I see them.

If I see someone is living on the street now before I would be the person to put money in someone's cup and keep it moving.

Now I stop, I talk, I look people in their eyes and I ask them their names, how their day is going.

And then I drop a couple dollars in their cup.

And it makes a difference." The film will be released in U.S. theaters on April 5th.

(Production: Nelson Villarreal, Lisa Giles-Keddie)

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