‘Mormon Land’: Filmmakers discuss ‘Jane & Emma’ and the friendship between a determined black convert and the first lady of Mormonism

(Photo courtesy of Excel Entertainment) Danielle Deadwyler and Emily Goss portray Jane Manning and Emma Smith, respectively, in the upcoming feature film "Jane & Emma."

Emma Smith stands alone as the most famous woman in Mormon history. The wife of church founder Joseph Smith is mentioned in histories, journals, even LDS scripture.

Less known is her enduring and endearing friendship with the early church’s most noted black woman, Jane Manning James.

A forthcoming film, titled “Jane and Emma,” documents and dramatizes that friendship.

The movie’s director, Chantelle Squires, and its screenwriter, Melissa Leilani Larson, discuss the film, its title characters and their hopes for what it might do for race relations within — and without — the LDS Church.

Listen here: