Miami-Dade County is celebrating “Moonlight” and the impact of its creators with the renaming of a street in their hometown.
Commissioners announced Tuesday that they would rename a stretch of NW 22nd Avenue in Miami’s Liberty City neighborhood “Moonlight Way,” according to the Miami New Times. The Academy Award-winning film, which is set in Liberty City, was co-written and directed by Barry Jenkins and executive produced by playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney ― both of whom are natives of the South Florida community.
Miami-Dade Commissioner Audrey Edmonson told the New Times that she hopes renaming the street will remind children in underprivileged neighborhoods that despite their surroundings, they can go on to achieve their dreams.
“This movie — at least what I got from it — really depicts the life of how a lot of us were raised and what we had to go through and endure as children in the inner city,” she said. “This goes out to children still living here in the inner city that are told they’ll never amount to anything. It shows that it doesn’t matter how you were raised or where you grew up; you can still turn out to be someone.”
Edmonson added that the film’s depiction of a young boy’s struggles growing up in the poverty-stricken neighborhood mirrors actual events that take place in Liberty City.
“To everyone, I’d say it’s still not too late to watch it. It will bring awareness to those not brought up that way,” she said. “It definitely shows what goes on in the city.”
The announcement of Moonlight Way comes ahead of Jenkins and McCraney’s celebratory return to their hometown. This weekend, the pair will attend a ceremony honoring “Moonlight” during an event held at Miami’s African Heritage Cultural Arts Center.