Writer-Director Ryan Coogler Talks FRUITVALE STATION, Bringing Oscar Grant’s Story to the Screen and Taking Dramatic License with the Story

     July 11, 2013


Opening this weekend is the indie film Fruitvale Station, inspired by the true-life story of Bay Area native Oscar Grant.  Debut feature writer-director Ryan Coogler – who is also from the Bay Area and about the same age Grant would have been – talked to us about his film that landed awards at both Cannes and Sundance.  Coogler commented on his decision to bring Grant’s story to the screen, working with cast members who possess varying levels of experience, taking dramatic license on the story and attending the prestigious film festivals.

Fruitvale Station, starring Michael B. Jordan, Melonie Diaz, Octavia Spencer, Kevin Durand and Chad Michael Murray, opens July 12th.  Hit the jump for our video interview with Coogler.

Here’s a time index for the interview if you’d like to jump to the highlights.  The video follows below:

  • 0:15 – Talks about the reason behind his decision to bring Oscar Grant’s story to the screen.
  • 0:50 – Comments on working with his friends, up-and-coming actors and veteran members of the cast.
  • 2:25 – Talks about how much of the film is from anecdotes about Oscar’s last day and how much is due to dramatic license.
  • 3:40 – Comments on his experience going to the Sundance Film Festival and Cannes for the first time.

Here’s the official synopsis for Fruitvale Station:

The true story of Oscar, a 22-year-old Bay Area resident, who crosses paths with friends, enemies, family, and strangers on the last day of 2008.


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