When We Rise, a seven-episode ABC limited LGBT series, written by Dustin Lance Black, has now been cast, with Rachel Griffiths, Guy Pearce, and Mary-Louise Parker starring.
Guy Pearce (LA Confidential) stars as Cleve Jones LGBT activist, Rachel Griffiths (Mammal, Six Feet Under) as Diane, a rights activist who is married to Mary-Louise (Angels in America) Parker’s character, Roma Guy, activist for women’s rights.
The series is about a real-life group of LGBT people, whose actions affected the Civil Rights and gay liberation movements in the US, and helped bring about the rights and protections the LGBT community enjoy today.
One of the group, yet to be cast, is Cleve Jones, a Quaker who met gay rights activist, Harvey Milk, in the 1970s, and who went on to found the Names Project AIDS Memorial Quilt, and was leader of the 2009 National March For Equality.
Mary-Louise Parker’s character, Roma Guy, co-founder of the San Francisco Women’s Building, is a lesbian and social activist, who was active in bringing access to healthcare to all San Francisco citizens. Wife Diane (played by Rachel Griffiths) co-founded the Women’s Building, and worked as a HIV/AIDS nurse for 33 years.
Gay African-American war veteran, Ken Jones, had to deal with racism within the gay movement, was organiser of homeless youth services, and worked with AIDS sufferers.
LGBT activist, writer and executive producer on the series, Dustin Lance Black (Milk) said:
“It’s been the honor of my life to research and craft these stories of family, diversity and equality over the past three years. To have collaborators of this caliber sign on to help bring these stories to life is a tremendous vote of confidence, and I hope a testament to the relevancy and necessity of our continued march toward justice for all”.
Dustin Lance Black and partner, Tom Daley, have just celebrated their third anniversary together.