Why the crowds are pulling into Fruitvale Station

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The name Fruitvale Station has been bandied about a lot in the last few weeks. The film opened in cinemas in the United States last Friday.

Made at a cost of US$900,000, the film has already reeled in almost US$7,000,000 at the US box office in its opening weekend.

The film, which was directed by Ryan Coogler, tells the story of black teen Oscar Grant, who was shot and killed by police at – you guessed it –Fruitvale Station – in the Fruitvale District of Oakland near San Francisco in the early morning hours of New Year’s Day 2009.

Grant, who was 22 at the time of his death, was also a two-time convicted felon. The film tells the tale of the final days of his life before being shot by Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) police officer Johannes Mehserle while being detained on the subway platform at Fruitvale Station.

The film stars Michael B. Jordan in the lead role of Oscar Grant with Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer playing his mother Wanda Grant.

Jordan has had small roles on American television in the HBO series The Wire and since 2010 has starred in the NBC series Parenthood.

Spencer won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the movie The Help.The film is Coogler’s first feature length work and has been highly praised. It received the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival.

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