Funding was hard to come by in completing the film. The Showtime channel initially financed it, but when they learned the film would be four hours instead of 90 minutes — as they preferred — the company pulled out. The company allowed Martin to keep initial investment funds and told him to pay them back when he could. “That was really nice of them,” Martin says.
When asked about why other networks didn’t back the film, he recounted his meeting with the History Channel, saying, “The History Channel told me, black people don’t watch the History Channel.” Shocked and confused, Martin kept proceeding with the production of the film determined that this story would be heard. “I don’t know why networks don’t support stories like this. I just don’t get it,” he says. He would finally receive huge backing from the U.S. Bank and the U.S. Army.
In the end, Martin was left with a myriad of soldier’s stories that will stick with him for the rest of his career and personal life. He elaborated on Staff Sgt. Ruben Rivers, a soldier in the 761st Tank Battalion who would repeatedly get pushed to the back of the line but would always fight to get back to the front. Rivers would receive the Medal of Honor 50 years later. Stories like this are now a part of Martin’s DNA, and he’s realized how fortunate he was to tell the stories of Rivers and others like him. “The biggest highlight for me was being able to go to the grave sites of these individuals who were fighting two wars, the war abroad and at home.”
Click here for more information on “For the Love of Liberty,” as well as show times in your area.
African Americans in the Army