Peacock Showcases Original Documentaries and Films in September, Including ‘A Most Beautiful Thing’
Peacock is offering original films and documentaries in September. Some chronicle the Black experience, while “The Public” is a drama about the takeover of a public library by society’s discarded men.
“A Most Beautiful Thing” examines a phenomenon: The first Black high-school rowing team in the U.S., launching Sept. 4. Based on Arshay Cooper’s memoir, Grammy winner Common narrates the documentary.
The doc looks at the Chicago rowing team 20 years later, after the death of a former coach. It chronicles their backstory as they undertake a new race. It aims, per executive producer Grant Hill, to show “young Black men in a positive, human and hopeful way.” Team captain Cooper even invites members of the Chicago Police Department to join their reunion team.
“The Sit-In” records a little-known week in the history of “The Tonight Show.” Jamaican-American singer Harry Belafonte was the first Black man to host the show in February 1968, during a volatile time in U.S. history. The country was rocked by protests against the Vietnam War and for civil rights. During his hosting week, Belafonte welcomed entertainment icons Aretha Franklin and Sidney Poitier, as well as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy.
“The Sit-In” showcases never-before-seen footage and premieres Sept. 10.
Executive produced by activist and two-time Super Bowl champion Malcolm Jenkins and written-directed by Sonia Lowman, “Black Boys” looks at the emotional lives of Black men, seen as individuals rather than a monolith. Interviews include rapper Vic Mensa, NBA All-Star Carmelo Anthony and sports journalist Jemele Hill.
Says Jenkins: “We need white people, and everyone for that matter, to see the identity of the black boy is under attack as early as preschool to adulthood. We all have a responsibility to help map the future of our children, and how our children preserve the world around them.”
By contrast, “Anthony,” an original Peacock film, is based on the murder of 18-year-old Black student Anthony Walker in Liverpool, England in 2005. It takes an unusual turn, examining his murder by exploring what may have happened had he lived. The cast includes Toheeb Jimon, Rakie Ayola, Julia Brown and Bobby Schofield and streams Sept. 4.
Finally, “The Public,” from writer, executive producer and director Emilio Estevez (“The Mighty Ducks,” “Cold Case”), streams Sept. 15. The nuanced drama begins with an act of civil disobedience by the homeless in Cincinnati that turns into a standoff with police.
“The Public” stars Alec Baldwin, Emilio Estevez, Jena Malone, Taylor Schilling, Christian Slater, Che “Rhymefest” Smith, Gabrielle Union, Jacob Vargas, Michael K. Williams, and Jeffrey Wright.