Oscar Grant Movie Being Made in Oakland

The film will be titled "Fruitvale" and will show the final 48 hours of Oscar Grant's life.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    An event that sparked years worth of controversy here in the Bay Area will be the subject of a movie. (Published Friday, Jul 27, 2012)

    After months of speculation, filming of a movie about Oscar Grant is underway in the East Bay.

    Producers with Forest Whitaker's film company confirm that filming will take place at BART stations and other locations throughout the East Bay through the end of the month.

    Grant's family says moviemakers hope to capture the 48 hours that proceeded the 2009 New Year's morning shooting in the film called "Fruitvale."

    "It's important for people to realize he was human. He was a father. He was a son. He was an uncle. He was a nephew," said Grant's uncle, Bobby Johnson.

    Grant's mother, Wanda Johnson says Oscar-winning actress Octavia Spencer plays her in the film.  She says she had dinner with Spencer, which gave her time to share with the actress the close relationship she had with her son.

    "I mean we cried together. It really was an honor. She talked about her four nephews. She can understand the pressure African American and brown men face. She was able to identify with that," said Johnson.

    Local actress Lucena Herrera landed a role in the film too. Herrera plays the part of Grant's sister-in-law.  Herrera, who is from Union City, says a lot of the cast and crew including the director have Bay Area roots.

    "I was so excited to get this part knowing I'm from the Bay Area and this was such a big story in the Bay Area," said Herrera. "Everyone's working hard to make this film what it is and bring this story to light."

    Grant's family has high hopes for the film.  His mother hopes it will serve as a teaching tool to help change behavior.

    "That's my expectation: others will change, that police officers will really look and think before they pull out that gun," said Johnson.

    While Grant never got the chance to live out the entire script of his life, those involved in the movie hope taking his story to the silver screen will have a lifelong impact.