John Boyega recalls father being stopped and searched returning from church

·2-min read
John Boyega poses for photographers upon arrival at the premiere for the film 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker', in central London, Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP)
John Boyega has recalled being stopped and searched by police. (AP)

John Boyega has revealed he has been stopped and searched by police, as his father.

The Star Wars actor – a prominent supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement – grew up in Peckham, south London, with his two sisters and parents Abigail and Samson Adegboyega.

Boyega told the Radio Times: "I've been stopped and searched, and my dad, who was a Pentecostal minister, got stopped on the way back from church. I was little.

"Everybody knows, especially if you grew up in Peckham, somebody who's gone through the darkest scenarios with the police. I do. I know a few people."

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The 28-year-old Hollywood star made headlines in June this year for an emotional speech he made in London’s Hyde Park during a a BLM peaceful protest march, during which he said "Black men, it starts with you".

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Boyega said of speaking out about racism: “You know that moment is going to go global and if I don't get cast because people or casting directors feel like it's too much friction for what they're trying to do. It is what it is.”

The Star Wars star plays police officer Leroy Logan – a real life anti-racism reformer – in Sir Steve McQueen's new series for the BBC, Small Axe, about the lives of black people in Britain.

During one scene in the episode Red, White and Blue, Logan finds racist graffiti on his locker.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 03: Actor John Boyega speaks to the crowd during a Black Lives Matter protest in Hyde Park on June 3, 2020 in London, United Kingdom.  The death of an African-American man, George Floyd, while in the custody of Minneapolis police has sparked protests across the United States, as well as demonstrations of solidarity in many countries around the world. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)
John Boyega made an emotional speech at a Black Lives Matter protest march this year. (Getty Images)

Boyega has said working on the series - commissioned by the BBC in 2014 - was like “therapy”.

He added: "I don't remember filming that scene. I just remember fuming and being angry.

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"I didn't see the locker room or the locker door until those cameras were rolling. So that reaction was all natural to the character and the choices I thought he would make."

Picture Shows:  Leroy Logan (JOHN BOYEGA) - (C) McQueen Limited - Photographer: Will Robson-Scott
Picture Shows: Leroy Logan (JOHN BOYEGA) - (C) McQueen Limited - Photographer: Will Robson-Scott

Leroy Logan attempted to reform the police force from within after seeing his own father assaulted by two officers.

He was awarded an MBE in 2001 for his services to policing, and retired in 2013 after 30 years in the police force.

Small Axe begins on Sunday, 15 November at 9pm on BBC One and will also be available on iPlayer.

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