Bayard Rustin is getting a posthumous honor from the City of New York.

The civil rights leader is at the center of a new New York City holiday, with Mayor Eric Adams declaring November 3 officially Bayard Rustin Day. Netflix film “Rustin” premieres in select theaters today, November 3, followed by a streaming release November 17.

A special screening of the film at the Paris Theatre is organized by Netflix for 300 high school and city college students to mark Bayard Rustin Day, “honoring the legacy of one of the greatest activists and organizers the world has ever known, Bayard Rustin,” per the official release. The celebration at City Hall follows the screening, with a proclamation being handed to the late Rustin’s partner Walter Naegle designating November 3 as Bayard Rustin Day in NYC and celebrating the theatrical release of the film. Naegle also serves as the executive director of the Bayard Rustin Fund.

“Rustin” stars Colman Domingo as the civil rights leader who organized the 1963 March on Washington alongside Martin Luther King, Jr. Rustin served as the president of the A. Philip Randolph Institute, a civil rights organization in New York City, from 1966 to 1979. Later in life, Rustin worked for LGBTQ+ activism and brought attention to the AIDS crisis in conjunction with the NAACP. Rustin died in 1987, and was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama in 2013.

DGA Award and five-time Tony Award winner George C. Wolfe helms the feature, which co-stars Chris Rock, CCH Pounder, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, and Jeffrey Wright. “Rustin” is produced by the Obamas Higher Ground productions, as well as Oscar winner Bruce Cohen.

“Nobody knows anything about him, and he’s a phenomenal human being,” director/producer Wolfe told IndieWire. “So the first obligation is to make sure that the story is told correctly, and that the story is engaging and powerful. And then my next responsibility is to people it with amazing people. There isn’t a passive character in the film. Everybody is operating from a place of extraordinary stakes. And so you want that dynamic at all times.”

Wolfe added, “Bayard is an extraordinary, a very astonishing human being, and people need to know him. They need to know him. Their lives will be better. People’s individual lives will be better for knowing about Bayard Rustin.”

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