Uncut Interview with William O’Neal, Source Material for Judas and the Black Messiah

If you haven’t watched Judas and the Black Messiah, I highly recommend the movie. The movie revolves around Fred Hampton, Chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panthers, and William O’Neal, an FBI informant and member of the Black Panthers.

During the movie, there are recreations of William O’Neal’s interview from Eyes on the Prize 2. The film ends with an actual clip of the interview.

I think I’ll let your documentary put a cap on that story. I don’t know. I don’t know what I’d tell him, other than… I was part of the struggle. That’s the bottom line. I wasn’t one of those armchair revolutionaries. One of those people that wanna sit back now and judge the actions or inactions of people when they sit back on the sideline and did nothing. At least I had a point of view. I was dedicated. And then I had the courage to get out there and put it on the line, and I did. Um… I think I’ll let history speak for me.

White words on a black screen state: “‘Eyes On The Prize 2’ premiered on PBS January 15th, 1990, Martin Luther King Day.”

“Later that evening, William O’Neal committed suicide.”

Interview with William O’Neal from Washington University Libraries on Vimeo.

For a more in-depth article on Fred Hampton and William O’neal, check out “The History of Judas and the Black Messiah” from Smithsonian Magazine.

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