The filmmaker and his partner Fran Walsh have been quietly funding the West Memphis Three investigation for years after they joined celebrities like Eddie Vedder and Natalie Maines among those keen to prove the men had been wrongfully convicted.
The West Memphis Three – Jason Baldwin, Jessie Misskelley, Jr. and Damien Echols – were jailed as teenagers for the murder of three young boys in 1993 and last year (11), they were set free after striking a plea deal with prosecutors.
They promptly staged a press conference and insisted they had spent 18 years behind bars for a crime they did not commit, but agreed to a plea deal to escape prison.
Jackson has been involved in making a documentary about the high-profile case, and reveals he stuck by the three accused because his own treatment at the hand of bullies pushed him to help those who are treated badly by society.
He says, “I was bullied and regarded as little bit of an oddball myself. And I see that happening to somebody else, so I just want to help them.”