Netflix is showing the world that content is king! The streaming service is adding big names to its growing list of producers, comedians and creators. Check out who’s bringing us brand new Netflix original content:
Black-ish creator and Girls Trip writer Kenya Barris has landed at Netflix with a multimillion-dollar overall deal, just six months after ABC scrapped a politically themed episode of the writer-producer’s sitcom for “creative differences.” The pact is no surprise: In April, The Hollywood Reporter broke the news Barris was looking to leave ABC’s studio arm for Netflix, and late last month, Barris and the Disney-owned company confirmed they were breaking up three years before their existing agreement was set to expire.
Octavia Spencer will finally star in her very own Netflix limited series, as turn-of-the-century black-beauty-and-hair-care mogul Madam C. J. Walker, born Sarah Breedlove. Based on her great-great-granddaughter A’Lelia Bundles’s biography On Her Own Ground, the show promises a “highly irreverent” account of Walker’s success as a black entrepreneur at the turn of the 20th century, overcoming “epic rivalries, tumultuous marriages and some trifling family” to become the first female self-made millionaire in the United States, and one of the most successful African-American female business owners of all time. LeBron James is one of the eight-part show’s executive producers, and if that guy doesn’t know excellence when he sees it, then truly no one does.
After a successful partnership with Netflix last year on the Oscar-nominated documentary 13th, Ava DuVernay is now set to produce, write, and direct a mini-series about the case of the Central Park Five. “The story of the men known as Central Park Five has riveted me for more than two decades,” DuVernay said in a statement. “In their journey, we witness five innocent young men of color who were met with injustice at every turn — from coerced confessions to unjust incarceration to public calls for their execution by the man who would go on to be the president of the United States.” Unlike 13th, the new limited series will be a scripted drama, and each of its five parts will focus on one of the Harlem teens at the center of the story: Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana, and Korey Wise. The timeline will begin in the spring of 1989, when they were first questioned about the rape of Trisha Meili in Central Park, all the way through 2014, when they were exonerated. The program will be co-produced in part by Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Films.