John Boyega starring as real life cop Leroy Logan in Steve McQueen’s new BBC and Amazon series

Katherine Johnston (12 August, 2020)

'Small Axe' portrays a series of stories from London’s Caribbean community between the 1960s and 80s

38219John Boyega. Credit: Gage Skidmore

John Boyega will star in Steve McQueen’s new BBC and Amazon Prime series Small Axe playing a real-life black police officer who joined the force to tackle systemic racism.

The series portrays a series of stories from London’s Caribbean community between the 1960s and 80s.

Star Wars actor Boyega, from Peckham, has been cast as Leroy Logan, who spent three decades in the Met and was awarded an MBE for his work in tackling racism.

Logan was inspired to change the force from within after two police officers assaulted his own father in front of him.

The former superintendent retired in 2013 and also held the role of the chair of the Black Police Association Charitable Trust after founding the National Association of Black Police Officers, which helped run Camberwell anti-knife and gun crime charity One Big Community.

In recent years he has also highlighted the impact of austerity on community policing.

The episode, Red, White And Blue, is one of five in the series slated to open the New York Film Festival in September this year and airing this autmn.

Another episode, Mangrove, comes just after the 50th anniversary of the Mangrove nine and their high profile trial. The trailer for the episode was published on the anniversary, this month.

McQueen said: “Sunday, August 9, is 50 years since the Mangrove March, which led to nine innocent black women and men being arrested.

“It was a march necessitated by relentless police brutality in Notting Hill. To commemorate the bravery of these community activists and the nine who went on to be acquitted of incitement to riot with the judge citing ‘evidence of racial hatred’, I am sharing the trailer of Mangrove, one of five films to be released under the banner Small Axe.”

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