The actor delivered an impassioned speech on Saturday during a Black Lives Matter demonstration in Los Angeles, California. He started by recalling some of his most memorable movie roles and how each of them taught him something different about race relations. In doing so, he touched on his work in films including Black Panther, Fruitvale Station, Fahrenheit 451, and Just Mercy.
“I learned his tactics. I learned his mentality,” Jordan said about his Just Mercy role. “I learned his approach to things. Very calm. Very strategic. Very thoughtful. You have to be proximal. You have to be close to [the] issues. We have to be close to the issues. That is why I love everyone out here because we have to be here together. Shoulder to shoulder.”
The 33-year-old went on to talk about the ways in which his production team prioritizes inclusion, but makes it clear that more still has to be done. Jordan then moved on to looking at Hollywood figures, demanding they up their diversity efforts by “investing in black staff,” and hiring private security instead of police.
“We are in the heart of Hollywood right now, one of the world’s most powerful industries and I am an active member of that. And they need to go on notice,” he said. “Anybody that deals with me, if you have racist beliefs, if you have a racist bone in your body, if you’re not with me, if you don’t stand with me and people that look like me, you don’t need to be with me. I use my power to demand diversity but it’s time that studios and agencies … do so. You committed to a 50/50 gender parity in 2020, where is the challenge to commit to black hiring? Black content, led by black executives, black consultants … So let us bring our darkness to the light? We’re done with discrimination.”
Watch Michael B. Jordan’s full speech for yourself down below: