'True Justice: Bryan Stevenson's Fight for Justice' Tells the Lawyer's Personal Struggle

Rick and Christina Gables
Nick Frontiero/Courtesy of HBO

For more than three decades, Alabama public interest attorney Bryan Stevenson, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, has advocated on behalf of the poor, the incarcerated and the condemned, seeking to eradicate racial discrimination in the criminal justice system.

This intimate portrait of a remarkable man, follows his struggle to create greater fairness in the system and shows how racial injustice emerged, evolved and continues to threaten the country, challenging viewers to confront it. True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight for Justice debuts Wednesday, June 26, on HBO.

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Told primarily in his own words, True Justice shares Bryan Stevenson’s experience with a criminal justice system that, he asserts, “treats you better if you’re rich and guilty than if you’re poor and innocent.” The burden of facing this system is explored in candid interviews with associates, close family members and clients.

This feature documentary focuses on Stevenson’s life and career – particularly his indictment of the U.S. criminal justice system for its role in codifying modern systemic racism – and tracks the intertwined histories of slavery, lynching, segregation and mass incarceration.

Highlighting watershed moments involving cases and clients, the film offers a rare glimpse into the human struggle that is required when the poor and people of color are wrongly condemned or unfairly sentenced, and explores the personal toll it has taken on Stevenson and his colleagues.

True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight for Justice, Premiere, Wednesday, June 26, 8/7c, HBO