A seven-part series partially inspired by LGBT activist Cleve Jones’s memoir When We Rise: My Life in the Movement, the new ABC docudrama When We Rise chronicles the long, difficult road for real-life figures fighting for LBGTQ rights. Starting with the Stonewall riots in Manhattan in 1969, the miniseries will continue through the 20th century to the early 21st to include the amazing successes in recent years.
The important leaders of this movement featured in the series include Cleve Jones himself, women’s rights leader Roma Guy and her wife Diane, community leader Ken Jones, and transgender activist Cecilia Chung. As expected of any serious examination of this struggle, When We Rise will feature a look at the ups and downs over the decades. It also hopes to show how important the role of transgender persons and people of color were to the movement by featuring diversity in these leaders.
Watch the trailer below. Warning; there is some uncomfortable material in the trailer.
With fresh worries about new attacks on LGBTQ rights, including the recent rollback of rights for transgender students, When We Rise can possibly serve as a reminder that we are all people, deserving of the same rights, freedom, and happiness as anyone else. The many civil rights movements for persons of all ethnicity, gender, and sexual preference have been hard fought and featured an unfortunate amount of suffering for those seeking rights.
We should never stop seeking to push forward regarding these rights. Cleve Jones sounds proud of the product created here. Hopefully, When We Rise does right by its subject matter at this latest important moment for LGBTQ rights. Many people sacrificed a lot to get America this far and we should remember those sacrifices.
The miniseries has certainly gathered a remarkable cast to tell this story. The miniseries debuts on February 27, and after a one-day recess will air its remaining episodes nightly from March 1 through March 3. When We Rise was written by Oscar winner Dustin Lance Black.