Film crew shoots for 3 days on documentary

Film crew shoots for 3 days on documentary


A California film company was in Philadelphia for three days last week, working on a documentary film about one of the Civil Rights activist leaders of the early 1960s who worked in Mississippi and Alabama.

The documentary will be about the life of Bob Zellner, now 86, who was the first white secretary of the the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). Zellner lives in Fairhope, Ala. He was active in several Civil Right efforts, including the investigation of the slayings of the three Civil Rights workers in Neshoba County.

The film’s origin comes from a movie script written by Pat Eddington of Mobile. The film crew had visited historic Civil Rights sites in Alabama, including Selma and Montgomery.

They wanted to come to Philadelphia so Eddington contacted her friend, Gloria Williamson.

“They are making a documentary about his life,” Williamson said. “They called me and asked how they could go around Philadelphia and I set them up with Leroy Clemons who does guided tours. They did some interviews at my house and I got some people I knew who were in the march. They interviewed me because of my prospective of the movement and I lived here at that time.”

During his tour, Clemons took the visitors to Mt. Nebo Missionary Baptist Church, McClelland Cafe & Grocery, the old jail where the three Civil Rights workers were held before being released and later slain,  Mt. Zion United Methodist Church and the site of the murders on  Road 515, also known as Rock Cut Road, off Mississippi 19 south.

“They shot a lot of film,” Clemons said. “They didn’t interview me. All of the talking I did came while they were filming during the tour.”

Williamson said she did not know when the documentary would be completed and released.

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