Emilio Estevez: In Today’s Political Climate ‘Libraries Have Become de Facto Homeless Shelters’ (Video)

Toronto Film Festival 2018: “… and librarians have become social workers” he tells TheWrap while promoting his film “The Public”

Last Updated: September 24, 2018 @ 6:04 PM

It’s been over 30 years since Emilio Estevez has made a movie inside a library. That movie, of course, is “The Breakfast Club,” the iconic ’80s teen movie. His latest though, “The Public,” has him locked up with a different group of rebels.

“I’ve got a new club now,” Estevez told TheWrap at Toronto International Film Festival.

In “The Public” — which Estevez stars in, writes and directs — a group of homeless people stage a sit-in at a public library in downtown Cincinnati when frigid temperatures and a lack of available homeless shelters forces them to find refuge. Estevez plays a librarian who ends up getting roped into something of a hostage situation and leads a charge for homeless rights.

“Libraries have become de facto homeless shelters, and librarians have become social workers, which is not what they went to library school to be taught,” Estevez said. “They’re the intersectionality of everything we’re experiencing right now… it all comes colliding together in a common place, which is under the roof of your public library.”

Michael Kenneth Williams said that for most of the homeless people in the film – one of whom he plays — they’re not trying to be political, but are simply fighting for their own survival.

“They just want to stay warm. They’re not looking to make a political statement,” Williams said. “You’ve got this storm brewing outside. It’s political; it’s dark; it’s financial.”

Estevez added, “If you haven’t been to your local library lately, I recommend you go, because it’s not the same library you remember as a child.”

“The Public” also stars Jena Malone, Christian Slater, Alec Baldwin, Jeffrey Wright, Taylor Schilling and Gabrielle Union.

Watch the interview with Estevez, Williams, Malone and Slater above.