Will Smith’s slavery drama “Emancipation” held its pink carpet premiere earlier this week and the movie’s producer Joey McFarland is drawing some criticism.

McFarland, 50, attended the occasion on Wednesday and introduced with him a Nineteenth-century photo of the whipped slave Peter — the portrait that impressed the film.

The Kentucky native caught up with Variety at the premiere and confirmed the reporter the image in a plastic case and defined why he carried it with him as an adjunct.

“I’ve the photo, that is the unique {photograph} from 1863,” McFarland advised the publication. “I wished a bit of Peter to be right here tonight.”

“The Wolf of Wall Street” producer added: “It’s [sad] to say so many artifacts and pictures haven’t been preserved or curated or revered. And I took it upon myself to curate and construct a group for future generations.”

McFarland defined he’s a collector and hopes to donate the picture as soon as he dies “for academic functions.”

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The producer defined why he wished to convey alongside the photo of a slave for the premiere.
Getty Images

“My love of historical past, my love of fact, my love of larger-than-life people that had an impression on not just a few individuals’s lives however the world, it’s price combating for, it’s price preserving, it’s price searching for out and defending, and that’s what I sought to do,” he stated.

[‘Emancipation’] is a dialog that’s wanted, it wants to begin and proceed and continue to grow and evolving. We simply want to come collectively,” McFarland stated. “We want to reckon with the previous so future generations don’t make the identical mistake.”

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During an interview with Variety, McFarland pulled out a photo of a slave named Peter from 1863.
Variety

The {photograph} of Peter’s scourged again serves because the inspiration for the film, by which Smith, 54, portrays the runaway slave.

The Black List founder Franklin Leonard criticized McFarland’s actions, tweeting: “Why do you personal the {photograph}? Why did you convey it to a film premiere if the intent is to protect it respectfully?”

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“Emancipation” can be launched in theaters on Friday and can drop on Apple TV+ on Dec. 9.
©Apple TV/Courtesy Everett Co

He continued: “You wished a ‘piece of Peter’ right here? You accumulate slave memorabilia that can be donated upon your loss of life? What do you do with it within the meantime? So many questions.”

Other followers had been additionally confused, additionally blasting McFarland’s alternative. “The truth {that a} man might be so smug,” one wrote. “This egotistical show is egregious and extremely disrespectful. When will it cease?”

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Will Smith stars as Peter, a slave on the run from slave hunters in Louisiana.
FilmMagic

Another particular person chimed in: “He couldn’t WAIT to pull it out his pocket on the pink carpet. This is gross and performative and irrespective of how nicely this film does or doesn’t do, him proudly displaying his possession of a photo of an enslaved man unrelated to him will all the time be disgusting.”

“What a colossally inappropriate factor to do on each degree,” another person wrote. “He shouldn’t personal it. Shouldn’t use the fallacious title for it. And positively mustn’t convey it to present and inform.”

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