because it's the right thing to do

John Boyega gives powerful speech at Black Lives Matter protest: 'I don't know if I'm going to have a career after this'

June 3, 2020

The Force was with John Boyega this week as he gave a powerful speech to Black Lives Matter protesters.

The actor, who played Finn in the new Star Wars trilogy, on Wednesday attended a protest in London sparked by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody, using a megaphone to emotionally speak to the crowd.

"This is very important," Boyega said. "This is very vital. Black lives have always mattered. We have always been important. We have always meant something. We have always succeeded, regardless. And now is the time!"

Boyega choked up as he spoke on "how painful it is to be reminded every day that your race means nothing," calling the crowd a "physical representation of our support" for George Floyd, Sandra Bland, Trayvon Martin, Stephen Lawrence, and Mark Duggan, reflecting on how "we don't know" what they "could have achieved." He also stressed the importance of keeping the protests sparked by Floyd's killing as "peaceful as possible."

"Because you know what, guys?" he said. "They want us to mess up. They want us to be disorganized. But not today!"

Boyega has been vocal on Twitter in recent days amid the outrage over Floyd's death, and at the protest, he referenced potential career repercussions for speaking out — namely, his lack of concern about them.

"Look, I don't know if I'm going to have a career after this," he said. "But f-- that." Brendan Morrow