Fiona Apple has been an outspoken advocate of court watching over the past few years. In March 2022, she shared a video urging her fans to sign a petition demanding that Prince George County, Maryland courts continue to allow civilians to tune into their proceedings virtually — a practice that has increased the legal system’s transparency nationwide by making it much more convenient for the average citizen to court watch. This week, Apple joined the creators of the newly launched National Courtwatch Network — a hub for the 30-plus independent court watch organizations operating across the country — to release a short film called “The Court Watchers” explaining the constitutionally enshrined tradition and encouraging all Americans to get involved. Apple’s score soundtracks the animated PSA, and she co-narrates the clip alongside actor Jesse Williams and formerly incarcerated court watcher Carmen Johnson.
In an interview promoting “The Court Watchers,” Apple told The Washington Post her score wasn’t meant to be a “masterpiece,” just a simple backdrop to enhance the story and the powerful testimonials of other court watchers who participated.
“Court watching is really the gateway to a better community, a better world, because it will make you care,” she said in the interview. “It makes you care about people you don’t know. And we need more of that. We really need more of that.”
Watch “The Court Watchers” below,.