Michael B. Jordan Almost Didn’t Take ‘Fahrenheit 451′ Role’ Because of ‘Police Brutality and Shootings’

In an era plagued with disreputable news sources and unwavering opinions, the cast and crew of “Fahrenheit 451” agree that now is an opportune time to retell Ray Bradbury’s classic tale.

“I didn’t want to play an authoritative figure with all that’s going on in my community with police brutality and shootings,” star Michael B. Jordan, who also executive produces the film, said at the New York premiere on Tuesday. “But Montag’s journey was an incredible one. He was willing to die for all the right reasons, so it’s something that I wrapped my brain around and really wanted to be a part of.”

Fahrenheit 451” depicts a future dystopia that aims to eradicate history by destroying books and condemning anyone who tries to preserve them. Jordan’s character, Montag, is a young “fireman” who abandons book burning in an effort to restore humanity.

“There is so much in this book that was written in 1953 that’s relevant to our world today in a terrifying and beautiful way,” executive producer Sarah Green told Variety.

At such a poignant time in our country’s political history, “Fahrenheit 451” serves as a crucial reminder to keep seeking knowledge and the truth, according to executive producer Ramin Bahrani.

“Don’t believe everything you read on the Internet,” Bahrani advised. “Get out of your own cycle. Think for yourself.”

The team hopes “Fahrenheit 451” will influence future generations to preserve their own voices and those that came before them.

“We’re never stretched anymore,” Green said. “It’s important to be thinking about our ideas and not just go with the status quo.” Also at the opening were stars Michael Shannon and Lilly Singh.

“Fahrenheit 451” debuts May 19 on HBO.

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