Till Freedom Come Productions L.L.C.
Social activist and filmmaker Keith Beauchamp has secured a place in American history with his critically acclaimed documentary The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till. Produced by his company, Till Freedom Come Productions L.L.C., the film prompted the federal government to reopen the 50-year-old case in an effort to bring Emmett Till’s murderers to justice. Till, 14, was killed for reportedly flirting with a white woman in Mississippi. The initial case was instrumental in sparking the Civil Rights Movement. “Physically being involved with the case and being a part of changing history has been my biggest accomplishment. Because of this case, laws have been passed,” says Beauchamp.
The documentary led to a unique collaboration with the FBI and their Civil Rights Cold Case Initiative, with Beauchamp producing investigative documentaries on other unsolved civil rights murder cases, TV One’s Murder in Black & White, History Channel’s Wanted Justice: Johnnie Mae Chappell and his current CBS News TV Series, The Injustice Files, for Investigation Discovery.
Despite his impressive list of awards, including an Emmy nomination, Beauchamp acknowledges the difficulty in getting works such as his on air. “My biggest stumbling block is finding the right homes to produce the material that I create, combined with finding the capital. I deal with difficult projects,” he says.
Born in Augusta, Ga., and growing up in Baton Rouge, La., for most of his life, Beauchamp’s personal experiences with racism and the encouragement of Emmett Till’s mother, Mamie Till Mobley, led him to tackle the issue in his films. “[Mamie Till Mobley] fought for forty-seven years to get her case reopened. She made me promise that I would tell Emmett’s story and use it as a reminder of the many other cases in our history,” says Beauchamp.
Going forward, “I want to make socially significant films hip again,” he says.
Favorite food: Creole
Favorite team: Saints
Favorite book: “Invisible Man” by Ralph Ellison