Civil rights icon Rep. John LewisJohn LewisPelosi receives John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award Schumer calls on McConnell to hold vote on Equality Act House approves anti-LGBT discrimination Equality Act MORE (D-Ga.) said he was moved by the depiction of the 1965 voting rights march in the new film "Selma."

Lewis served as chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and helped lead the 1965 march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., on what became known as "Bloody Sunday." He is played by actor Stephan James in the film, which depicts the voting rights efforts of Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights leaders.

ADVERTISEMENT

Lewis recently told The Washington Post that he became emotional when he met James on the film's set earlier this year.

"Seeing myself being played is almost too much," Lewis said in the interview.

The Georgia Democrat, who has served in Congress since 1987, said the film's release is especially timely given the controversy over killings of African-American men by white police officers in New York and Missouri.

“The movie is good timing with what is going on in Ferguson, and I was so pleased to see in the movie there was a mention of Ferguson,” Lewis told Variety‘s “PopPolitics” on SiriusXM. “It was said to another generation, and maybe future generations, that through the peaceful nonviolent action you can bring about change.”

A song from the film by John Legend and Common references protests in Ferguson, Mo.