The Trial Of The Chicago 7: The Real Story Behind The Netflix Movie

By Kellar Ellsworth
The members of the Chicago Seven (Rubin, Dellinger, Weiner, Froines, Hayden, Davis, Hoffman) pose with others holding a poster of Bobby Seale, Chicago, Illinois, October 1969. Photo by New York Times Co./Getty Images

Who were the Chicago 7 and why were they on trial? The trial of the Chicago 7 was a court case that concerned the antiwar protests and rioting surrounding the 1968 Democratic National Convention, which was held in Chicago. The scene resembled a war zone, and it was broadcast into American homes via the nightly news. Eight leaders (later seven) of various groups were charged with having coordinated their efforts to go to Chicago to deliberately incite the unrest.

Aaron Sorkin’s new Netflix movie The Trial Of The Chicago 7 centers around the drama that followed of one of the most significant antiwar protests in American history. During a time, not radically different from today, when civil rights and anti-war protests were trying to shed light on heinous abuses and corruption, this monumental trial captured the attention of the nation.