Where are cast today from Bully (2011) Documentary? – Lee Hirsch investigates five stories of young people who have been subjected to heinous persecution by their peers. After drawing a gun on the adolescents who had tormented her for years, Ja’meye, 14, ends up in reform school. Alex, 14, is pummelling and mocked on the bus, and his abuse is captured on camera. Kelby, a 16-year-old star athlete, faces ostracism and worse after coming out as a lesbian. The worst part is that two boys, one 17 and the other 12, attempt themselves to avoid the torment.
‘Bully,’ (2011) directed by Lee Hirsch, is a gripping documentary drama film about five high school teenagers — Ja’Meya Jackson, Alex Libby, Kelby Johnson, Tyler Long, and Ty Smalley — who undergo extreme bullying from their classmates. When the school administration refuses to help, some students resort to drastic methods to protect themselves. The gripping story of ‘Bully‘ has sparked a long-overdue discussion about bullying and harassment in schools.
Let’s take a look at how the cast members and their family members are doing right now, shall we?
What Happened to Ja’Meya Jackson and Where Is She Now?
At the time of her appearance in ‘Bully,’ Ja’Meya Jackson was living with her mother in Yazoo, Mississippi. The 14-year-old had a bright future ahead of her with an excellent academic record and basketball talents, but she had been bullied and plagued by her classmates for a long time.
Things were difficult for the young girl, who was a timid adolescent who rarely got into fights with others. As a result, when she finally spoke up against her bullies, everyone was taken aback by her extreme response.
Ja’Meya got her mother’s revolver from the closet and brandished it at her harassers on the school bus in an attempt to terrify them in order to stand up to them. No one was hurt, but Ja’Meya was tackled to the ground and taken into custody.
According to the documentary, she was charged with 45 felonies, all of which were finally dismissed on the condition that she be kept in a psychiatric facility for three months or until a doctor judged her fit to return home. She eventually returned home and resolved to begin a new life.
Ja’Meya most likely transferred to a different high school and graduated in 2013 with a perfect attendance record. She went on to work as a Production Technician in 2014, after which she was admitted into Virginia College in Birmingham, Alabama. She lives in Pickens, Mississippi, where she works for a vehicle manufacturing company.
Despite the fact that Ja’Meya prefers to stay out of the spotlight and is rarely seen on social media, we know she has done quite well for herself and is focused on healing and moving forward in life.
What Happened to Alex Libby and Where Is He Now?
Alex Libby, a 12-year-old from Sioux City, Iowa, was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome and struggled socially at school. Beginning in elementary school, he was subjected to threats and physical harassment in both the classroom and on the school bus. Alex chose to remain silent about it, dismissing it as harmless teasing until things began to spiral out of control, particularly in seventh grade. He was assaulted, stabbed, and threatened, and his life was on the line.
Despite the fact that some action was taken against Alex’s aggressors later, he preferred not to protest to his elders since he believed it would yield no consequences. As his academic year came to a finish, things gradually improved, and he began to get along with his classmates.
Following the documentary, Alex and his family relocated to Oklahoma City, where his mother believed he and his siblings would be better educated. He also became an anti-bullying crusader after appearing in Anderson Cooper’s special documentary ‘The Bully Effect.’
Alex interned in New York in 2014 for The BULLY Project, a social action campaign against bullying inspired by the movie ‘Bully.’ Not only that, but he went to the White House and spoke out against bullying in schools on national television and at rallies. He currently works as a video creator, advertising ambassador, singer, and songwriter, among other things.
Alex’s mother passed away in 2019, and he hasn’t been active on social media since then. We do know that he lives in Edmond, Oklahoma, and that he enjoys following his artistic interests.
What Happened to Kelby Johnson and Where Is He Now?
Kelby Johnson, a resident of Tuttle, Oklahoma, came out as a lesbian in middle school, and her entire hometown socially rejected her as a result. Kelby, who was 16 at the time the documentary was made, revealed that things had become so bad that he was hit by a minivan driven by a gang of boys while walking back from lunch. Kelby claims that not only did his classmates mistreat and ignore him, but his teachers also singled him out, removing him from sports teams and placing him on a separate roll call list.
Kelby’s entire family was also singled out and isolated by their friends and neighbours. All of this took its toll on Kelby, who admitted to self-harming and attempting suicide three times. Kelby chose to stay in Tuttle, despite his parents’ advice to leave, and resist the harassment with the help of his loving partner and a few close friends.
When things did not alter after a few months, however, Kelby’s parents took him out of school and forced him to work full-time while pursuing his G.E.D. He then proceeded to Oklahoma City to intern as an activist for LGBTQ+ children at GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network). In addition, he co-starred with Alex Libby in the film ‘The Bully Effect.’ Kelby came out as a transgender male in 2014, and was planning to pursue anthropology at the time.
Kelby got gender reassignment surgery after that. He has been residing in Yukon, Oklahoma, since 2019. Kelby is active on social media platforms, although he prefers to keep his personal life private. He is currently employed as an assistant manager at a company and enjoys spending time with his friends and family.
What Happened to Tyler Long and Where Is He Now?
Tyler Long, a 17-year-old from Murray County, Georgia, committed suicide in October 2009 after years of persistent bullying and harassment by his classmates. The little boy had distinctive behavioural quirks as a result of his Asperger’s Syndrome, which irritated his classmates, who violently tormented him by calling him names, removing his belongings, and, worst of all, spitting in his meal.
Tyler’s parents said in the video that despite repeated concerns to school officials, his health was overlooked, and no action was taken. Even after their son’s death, David and Tina Long said that school administrators failed to react or even conduct a memorial for him.
The Longs and the school then engaged in a protracted legal struggle in which they sued the authorities for alleged carelessness in Tyler’s death as a result of his bullying. Due to the family’s lack of proof, a judicial agreement was struck in 2013 that charges could not be pursued further. Furthermore, the charges brought against the latter were withdrawn.
In Tyler’s honour, David and Tina launched the Everything Starts With 1 organisation, which fights bullying and discrimination in schools around the country. They’ve also appeared on major shows like ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show.’ They now live in Adairsville, Georgia, in Bartow County, and have worked tirelessly to raise awareness about bullying and its ramifications.
What Happened to Ty Smalley and Where Is He Now?
Richard Ty Field, also known as Ty Smalley, committed suicide in May 2010 after being bullied and tormented by his classmates for his height. Kirk and Laura Smalley teamed with Stand for the Silent, a non-profit group run by Oklahoma University students, after their 11-year-old son was brutally killed.
The duo has gone out to over a thousand schools and 1,250,000 youths and adults to raise a voice against bullying through their anti-bullying group. Kirk and Laura visited 16 countries and 42 states in addition to meeting former President Barack Obama.
Laura died in November 2020 following a battle with a brain aneurysm. Kirk now lives in Perkins, Oklahoma, where he continues to fight for the cause that he and his late wife began in memory of their son.
Stream Bully (2011) Documentary on Amazon Prime Video.