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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Alan Johnson

John Boyega reveals he lost friends over anti-racism speech after George Floyd's murder

John Boyega has revealed he lost friends over his famous anti-racism speech in Hyde Park in 2020 in the wake of George Floyd's murder.

"I've had actors that I'm close to disagree with what I did that day. Some people don't want to work with me," the Star Wars actor revealed to the Evening Standard.

The star has no regrets, however, as he added: "I want to work in this industry as me."

Addressing the Black Lives Matter crowd through a megaphone that day he cried: "Black lives have always mattered. We have always been important. We have always meant something. We have always succeeded regardless.

"Now is the time. I ain't waiting."

Actor John Boyega spoke to the crowd during a Black Lives Matter protest in Hyde Park in 2020 (Getty Images)

He also referenced two other black Americans who controversially died in the US, as well as the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence in London in 1993.

He added: "We are a physical representation of our support for George Floyd.

"We are a physical representation of our support for Sandra Bland. We are a physical representation of our support for Trayvon Martin. We are a physical representation of our support for Stephen Lawrence."

Ms Bland died aged 28 while in police custody in Texas following a traffic stop, while Mr Martin was shot and killed, aged 17, by a neighbourhood watch volunteer in Florida, with both deaths sparking protests across the US at the time.

John Boyega at the screening for The Woman King (EDUARDO LIMA/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

John told attendees: "I'm speaking to you from my heart. Look, I don't know if I'm going to have a career after this, but f*** that.

"Today is about innocent people who were halfway through their process. We don't know what George Floyd could have achieved, we don't know what Sandra Bland could have achieved, but today we're going to make sure that won't be an alien thought to our young ones.

"I need you to understand how painful this s*** is. I need you to understand how painful it is to be reminded every day that your race means nothing and that isn't the case any more, that was never the case any more."

John also spoke of his unhappiness towards Disney for failing to protect him from racist attacks during his time as Finn in the Star Wars saga.

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