Damien Echols spent 18 years behind bars for a murder he didn’t commit. That story has already been the subject of three documentaries and countless appeals, but Amy Berg’s take on the story of the West Memphis Three goes further. The film exposes new evidence and different voices. Echols, Berg and producer Lorri Davis (who is married to Echols) filled in Festival Insider:
Amy Berg, Lorri Davis and Damien Echols of WEST OF MEMPHIS dish at Sundance Channel HQ– click for photos
Director Amy Berg and producers Lorri Davis and Damien Echols discuss their documentary WEST OF MEMPHIS at Sundance Channel HQ. Click below to see the full gallery!!
The tragic case of the West Memphis Three, three teenagers accused, tried, and convicted of a crime they did not commit, is a story that simply must be told. But it already has been told: in a trilogy of superb documentaries entitled PARADISE LOST by directors Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky. Over the course of almost twenty years, Berlinger and Sinofsky chronicled the lives of the West Memphis Three — Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelley, and Jason Baldwin — and systematically disproved the case against them. So the news of a brand-new documentary on the subject entitled WEST OF MEMPHIS was met by many with skepticism and confusion. Even with its impressive creative pedigree — it was produced by Peter Jackson (THE LORD OF THE RINGS) and directed by Amy Berg (DELIVER US FROM EVIL) — some observers worried this documentary would simply rehash elements from the other three films. As a follower of the West Memphis Three’s case and a fan of the PARADISE LOST series (you can read my review of the last film here), I know I was.