Regina King, ‘One Night in Miami’ cast discuss bringing Black icons to life on screen

Some would say Lynn and Shireen talking to each other on the Deco Drive desk every night is pretty iconic, but not even this can compare to just how interesting it is to watch the larger-than-life men in a new fictional drama taking place right here in SoFlo. Alex Miranda, a legendary reporter, has the story.

In “One Night in Miami,” four of the most influential men during the civil rights movement come together for one night to talk, learn and grow.

Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Jim Brown and Sam Cooke — all in one room, at the same time.

Kingsley Ben-Adir (as Malcolm X): “Tonight is a chance for us to reflect.”

“One Night in Miami” imagines what it would have been like for four of the most iconic Black men during the height of the civil rights movement to just … talk.

Leslie Odom Jr. (as Sam Cooke): “Everything is not so black and white as you make it out to be!”

Kingsley Ben-Adir (as Malcolm X): “Now we are fighting for our lives!”

It’s Regina King’s first time directing a feature film.

Alex: “Just tell me what’s going on. How are you feeling?”

Regina King: “It’s great to get the critical acclaim but, you know, you want the audience to love it.”

Based on this Oscar-favorite fictional drama, it won’t be her last.

Regina King: “Because we’ve put them on this pedestal and treated almost god-like, we forget that they’re men first and they have emotions. and no human being always gets it right.”

We do know a lot about each of these men, but Leslie Odom Jr., who’s a singer like his character, Sam Cooke, says you haven’t seen them like this.

Leslie Odom Jr.: “Because of the way his life ended, his entire life for some people has taken on this tragic patina, when he was the life of the party. Sam was the high school quarterback.”

Taking on any of these roles — intimidating! But Aldis Hodge has the added pressure of playing Jim Brown, who he knew was going to watch it.

Aldis Hodge: “You don’t want to get the call that he’s like, ‘So, uh, I saw what you did, and it was trash.'” (laughs)

Kingsley Ben-Adir wears the signature Malcolm X browline glasses, and he told me this is a love letter to Black men.

Kingsley Ben-Adir: “The love and joy and friendship between these guys was at the heart of this piece.”

And that he wouldn’t want to spend one night in Miami with anyone else.

Kingsley Ben-Adir: “I don’t even know what I would ask him. I would have just loved to have been his company in silence, you know? And just watch him operate.”

By the way, Jim Brown did watch it, and told Aldis that he loved it.

You can stream “One Night in Miami” on Amazon Prime Video this Friday.

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