Jennifer Hudson is all too familiar with gun violence; in 2008, her mother, brother and nephew were all fatally shot in Chicago.
Rather than shy away from the city’s rampant gun violence, the singer-actress decided to tackle the issue head on—the precise reason why she opted to accept a role in Spike Lee’s controversial new film, Chiraq.
“I thought, ‘You know what? It’s worth me telling me story so that hopefully no one else has a story like this to tell,’” Hudson said to W Magazine. “The film we’re doing is trying to save my city, [and] as my mother said, take care of home.”
In the film, which opened in theaters last week, Hudson plays a mother who has lost her young daughter to gun violence, a tragic death that is far from an isolated incidence.
“It’s a bad time right now, no matter where we look,” Hudson said. “Kids can’t go to school, people can’t go to church, you can’t go to the movies. It’s like, what are we doing to ourselves? What’s happening? We’re acting like animals. It’s unfortunate that things are this way, but it’s not going to change unless we do something about it.”