The trailer is out now for Loving, the moving true story of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple who challenged the nation's antimiscegenation laws laws in the 1950s and '60s and set the stage for marriage equality. The film is directed by Jeff Nichols, stars Ruth Negga and Joel Edgerton, and will be released November 4.
The Lovings were arrested in Virginia for living as a married couple and defying the Southern state's laws against mixed-race marriages. Richard and Mildred fought back, suing the state and bringing the case to the Supreme Court, where they were victorious — not only winning their case but taking down all of the nation's antimiscegenation laws.
The Loving v. Virginia case was routinely invoked in legal battles for marriage equality, including Obergefell v. Hodges. The ruling in that 2015 case reversed bans on same-sex marriage across the nation. Though Richard Loving was killed by a drunk driver in 1975, Mildred survived the same car accident. In 2007, she publicly endorsed marriage equality:
My generation was bitterly divided over something that should have been so clear and right. The majority believed that what the judge said, that it was God's plan to keep people apart, and that government should discriminate against people in love. But I have lived long enough now to see big changes. The older generation's fears and prejudices have given way, and today's young people realize that if someone loves someone they have a right to marry.
Surrounded as I am now by wonderful children and grandchildren, not a day goes by that I don't think of Richard and our love, our right to marry, and how much it meant to me to have that freedom to marry the person precious to me, even if others thought he was the "wrong kind of person" for me to marry. I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sex, no matter their sexual orientation, should have that same freedom to marry. Government has no business imposing some people’s religious beliefs over others. Especially if it denies people’s civil rights.
I am still not a political person, but I am proud that Richard's and my name is on a court case that can help reinforce the love, the commitment, the fairness, and the family that so many people, black or white, young or old, gay or straight seek in life. I support the freedom to marry for all. That's what Loving, and loving, are all about.
Watch the Loving trailer below.