Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks Studios have acquired the rights to make a film about the life of Martin Luther King – icon of the struggle for civil rights in the United States. The project is an old dream of Spielberg and his partner Stacey Snider, who tried over several years to obtain legal permission to make the film. The filmmakers are very enthusiastic about the new production. “We are all honored that the King Estate is giving us the opportunity to tell the story of these defining, historic events,” Spielberg said. “It is our hope that the creative power of film and the impact of Dr. King’s life can combine to present a story of undeniable power that we can all be proud of.”

The director is internationally known for films such as E.T., Schindler’s list, Indiana Jones and Jaws, among other hits.

The DreamWorks film is the first to have authorisation from the family to integrally use King’s work, including the famous speech, “I have a dream”, that he gave in Washington in 1963.

Martin Luther King was assassinated in 1968 in Memphis at the age of 39 and was the youngest person ever to receive the Nobel Peace Prize for his work to end racial segregation and discrimination in the United States.

**Civil rights struggle**

Martin Luther King Jr. was born in Atlanta, Georgia on the 15th of January 1929. He was a protestant minister and political activist. As a member of the Baptist Church, he became one of the most important civil-rights leaders (for African-Americans and women principally) in the United States and in the world, through a campaign of nonviolence. He organised and led marches with the aim of achieving the right to vote, the end of segregation, the end of discrimination at work and other basic civil rights. The majority of these rights were, later on, added to US law with the approval of the Civil Rights Act (1964) and the National Voting Rights Act (1965).