Elizabeth Gilbert will attend and speak to students at the Anti-Death Penalty Alternative Spring Break, which is March 14-18, 2011 in Austin (To register for the spring break click here). Elizabeth will attend on Thursday, March 17, when the program includes a screening at the SXSW Film Festival of a new documentary about the Todd Willingham case – “Incendiary“. The film screens at noon March 17 at the Rollins Theater at the Long Center. After the screeening, Elizabeth Gilbert will participate in a discussion about the film and about the Todd Willingham case, along with the fimmakers.
Frontline has an interview on their website with Elizabeth. Below is an excerpt in which she talks about her meeting with Todd’s former wife Stacy:
Can you describe your meeting with Stacy?Stacy came in, and I felt that she was very genuine, and I think this was the first time she had really talked to anybody outside [of the official investigation]. … But to me [she] was just like, “Oh, sure, I’ll meet you;
I’ll tell you this is the truth.” … I told her I was a writer; I’m from Houston. I interviewed her; I taped her. And she seemed kind of reserved, nervous, just a person who had a lot of tragedy in her life.I had heard from Todd that her mother had been murdered, and she had been there. So it seemed like her life had been filled with tragedy, … and she seemed genuinely to feel Todd had not done this. … She really convinced me that she felt that an injustice had been done. … She didn’t feel like he was capable of doing that.So you believe Stacy told the truth?Yes, I really do.Do you remember how she said it?… She cried, and I just remember her saying, “Todd is not capable of doing that,” just acknowledging that he loved his children. I sensed this very pained individual. … After the conviction, and after Todd was on death row, Stacy decided to get a divorce. She didn’t visit him on death row.