Connie Britton is dealing with the realities associated with raising a Black son in America during a racial reckoning that many believe is well overdue. The Joe Bell star recently spoke with The View about how her perspective has changed since adopting her son, Eyob (Yoby), from Ethiopia ten years ago.
“Well, it’s been complicated and painful as I think it’s been for everybody, for different reasons, and in different ways,” Connie shared when speaking of America’s racial reckoning. “For me, I am going through my own reckoning of the privilege that I’ve been raised with and grown up in, and have been able to create my life in,” the actress shared. “At the same time, I’m raising a Black boy in America and at the end of the day, he’s my son. I will fight to the end for him.”
Connie Britton adopted Eyob in 2011 after a three-year adoption journey. The actress moved to Nashville, Tennessee, for her role in Nashville shortly after welcoming her son into her home.
“He loves music, and I’d like to think that it was spending all those years onset in Nashville, Tennessee,” Britton recently said on Good Morning America (GMA). “If you’re in Nashville, Tennessee, how can you not love music,” she asked. “And that’s where he grew up.”
Britton’s latest role in Joe Bell is one that raises awareness about bullying and its lasting impact. The actress portrays Joe Bell’s wife, Lola Bell, who stood behind her husband as he embarked on a cross-country trip in honor of his son.
Jadin Bell committed suicide on February 3, 2013, after suffering under the weight of bigotry for being gay. Joe set out to walk from Oregon to New York in April 2013 but was killed by a tractor-trailer in October while walking on the shoulder of U.S. 40 in Colorado. The truck driver was cited for careless driving.
“This is a movie about a family learning to understand their son who is LGBTQ,” Connie Britton told GMA of the upcoming film about the Bells. “He’s gay, and they don’t understand that initially,” the actress continued.
“The whole idea of this movie is to create understanding and for people who maybe aren’t as familiar with what it’s like to feel different in a community [to] have that conversation [and] understand that we can all still love each other even if we live our lives in different ways,” Britton explained. “In whatever ways there are, we want to just create unity, and conversation, and understanding.”
Joe Bell comes to theaters on Friday, July 23, 2021.
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