The legal odyssey of rapper Meek Mill has been a long and tortured one, built out of parole violations, judges under federal investigation, and the occasional hopeful highlight, as when Mill was released on bail just a few weeks ago. Now, the rapper’s long-time supporter, JAY-Z, is committing to bringing this long, strange journey to the masses, with The Hollywood Reporter noting that Amazon has picked up a six-part documentary from the rap mogul about Mill’s repeated incarcerations, and the things he thinks they say about the American justice system.
This isn’t the first foray Jay has made into the world of socially conscious film-making; Rest In Power, his take on the Trayvon Martin story, is due to air on the Paramount Network in July. This isn’t the first time he’s thrown his considerable clout behind Mill’s legal defense, either; he wrote a scathing op-ed in The New York Times last November, accusing the criminal justice system of “stalking,” “ensnaring,” and “trapping” men like Mills, whose multiple incarcerations largely stem from a single incident more than a decade ago. “it’s time we highlight the random ways people trapped in the criminal justice system are punished every day,” he wrote at the time.
Mill himself helped to announce the news today. “Not only will this documentary give viewers an unprecedented look at my life,” the rapper said in a statement, “But it will also allow me to use my public platform to highlight the need for criminal justice reform.”