Atom Egoyan’s controversial new film about the West Memphis Three, The Devil’s Knot has its first star in the shape of Reese Witherspoon.
It’s based on teh the 2003 book by reporter Mara Levitt in which she followed the prolonged murder trial of Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley Jr, who served 17 years in prison before being released this August. They were accused of killing three eight-year old cub scouts in a wooded area of Arkansas called Robin Hood Hills. While they’re all free now, the judge presiding didn’t allow them to seek compensation for their years behind bars.
Witherspoon will play Pam Hobbs, the mother of one of the accused who initially thought the trio were guilty but eventually came to believe their innocence.
Shooting begins in the summer.
The case has been highlighted in the past by three documentaries and an album by seminal punk band Black Flag who collaborated with numerous other high-profile musicians to release the album Rise Above: 24 Black Flag Songs to Benefit the West Memphis Three. It’s about time this case got mainstream attention.
Meanwhile, enjoy Rise Above by Rollins Band featuring Public Enemy’s Chuck D: