Theatre major and Oglethorpe University Theatre Scholarship recipient Marc Collins ’23 recently appeared in the widely-acclaimed feature, “Till,” a film following educator and activist Mamie Till-Bradley on her campaign for justice after the senseless, racially-motivated murder of her 14-year-old son Emmett Till. Collins plays Wheeler Parker, Jr., Emmett Till’s cousin.
Based on the real events that helped ignite the Civil Rights Movement, “Till” is as much a story about justice as it is about grief. Though Mamie Till-Bradley’s strength and activism shone a spotlight on the gruesome realities of racism in America, it came at the cost of her son, whom the audience only briefly meets before the horrific event. Most notably — and most tragically — she arranged for an open-casket funeral for Till, an event that forced tens of thousands of attendees to come to grips with the barbarism towards Black Americans.
“‘Till’ is the most meaningful project I have worked on,” says Collins, “Systematic racism is an issue we deal with still today, and I feel that one can watch this film and get inspired by ‘Till’s’ story to seek more change in the world.”
The film was produced in part by Whoopi Goldberg, who plays Till-Bradley’s mother and Till’s grandmother in the film.
“Till” is just one of the many credits Collins has garnered as a young actor. He has made appearances in “Kevin (Probably) Saves the World,” “BMF” and “Living Vee,” in addition to various short film roles.
Collins has served as Freshman, Sophomore and now Senior Class President for the Class of 2023, an orientation leader, a member of the Multicultural Leadership Institute and a member of the Honor Council.
Last semester, Collins studied abroad at the University of Oxford in England — one of Oglethorpe’s 16 International Exchange Partners around the globe. There, Collins studied studied Activism Through Black Theatre and Shakespeare and Race.
“I cannot wait to carry this experience over into my acting career and into my intercommunication with my peers back home,” he said of the experience.
“Till” is in theatres now — watch the trailer below. Collins can be seen at 00:36.