Emmett Till

NBC Chicago Examines ‘The Lost Story of Emmett Till' in New Documentary

The original documentary launches on NBC Chicago's free app on Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV

NBC Chicago’s original documentary, "The Lost Story of Emmett Till: The Universal Child," launching on Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Fire, as well as on NBCChicago.com, examines the 1955 lynching of a Black teenager from Chicago who was visiting relatives in Mississippi and the impact of his murder on the Civil Rights Movement.

Then a twist: How did a globally known name – Emmett Till – quickly fade away from history books? How could Chicagoans forget the brutal torture of a 14-year-old boy? Award-winning Investigative Journalist Marion Brooks details the events surrounding the case to help viewers understand the context behind the lost story of Emmett Till.  

“This heinous crime happened 66 years ago, and the story is still relevant today," Brooks said. "The world’s shock of Emmett Till’s open casket photograph is a parallel to the world’s shock of the George Floyd video. It’s important to understand our history as we look to heal and grow."

Click here to watch NBC Chicago's feature documentary, "The Lost Story of Emmett Till: The Universal Child." To view the documentary on your television, download NBC Chicago's free app on Roku, Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV.

"Emmett Till’s family never found justice. The investigation is closed now. At NBC Chicago, we recognize the importance to keep this story alive and reflect on how far we’ve come and how much more work needs to be done as a community,” said Kevin Cross, President and General Manager of NBCUniversal Local Chicago.  

"The Lost Story of Emmett Till: The Universal Child" features video sourced from NBC Chicago’s 1985 documentary "Emmett Till: The Murder and the Movement," written by reporter Rich Samuels and produced by Anna Vasser. The film includes interviews with Emmett’s mother and people who witnessed the injustice surrounding the case. Reporter Rich Samuels also approaches one of the killers.

Brooks complements the archival footage with context on what the world was like in 1955 and why Emmett Till’s story began to disappear from public consciousness.

Stream the documentary by downloading NBC Chicago's free app on Roku, Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV.

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