With his bold and multifaceted Small Axe anthology, Steve McQueen has made the films of the moment. The three parts screened in the NYFF58 Main Slate—Lovers Rock, Mangrove, and Red, White and Blue—vividly capture the lives of London’s West Indian community in the 1970s and ’80s and their force of will against systemic racism and discrimination. “I dedicate these films to George Floyd, and all the other Black people that have been murdered, seen or unseen, because of who they are, in the U.S., U.K., and elsewhere,” the director said in May.
In this lively conversation with NYFF Director of Programming Dennis Lim , McQueen and his collaborators—including co-writers Courttia Newland and Alastair Siddons, cinematographer Shabier Kirchner, and actors Shaun Parkes and Letitia Wright—dug into the making of this sprawling project and the artistic and political ambitions that have shaped it.
Watch/listen to the conversation below, presented by HBO and sponsored by Campari. Visit our NYFF58 playlist for more talks and Q&As.