Status:  Announced
Genre:  Biography
Director:  John Ridley
Studio(s):  Participant, Royal Ties Productions
Cast:  Regina King (Shirley Chisholm)

Details:  Regina King is set to star in and produce Shirley, the feature film biopic about Shirley Chisholm, America’s first Black congresswoman.  The film, produced by Participant, will be written and directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker John Ridley, with production expected to begin later this year.  The film is being produced based on the life story rights through an exclusive agreement with the Chisholm Estate.

Story:  The story tracks Chisholm’s 1972 presidential campaign, a groundbreaking historical moment, giving what’s described as “an intimate, behind-the-scenes portrait of one of the most ground-breaking political leaders of our time.”  Source:  Deadline.  Photo Source:

The Kings of Napa

Status:  Announced
Genre:  Drama
Director:  Matthew A. Cherry (first two episodes)
Studio(s):  Warner Bros. Television, Harpo Films
Cast:  Ebonee Noel, Karen LeBlanc, Yaani King Mondschein, Rance Nix.

Story:  The Kings of Napa is an upcoming drama from Janine Sherman Barrois for the Oprah Winfrey Network. The series is centered on the power struggle between the wealthy vineyard-owning King siblings in idyllic and picturesque Napa Valley. The aspirational African American family’s line of business has granted them the type of status that lands them in design magazines and on society pages. The wine business has brought the Kings success and acclaim, but following their patriarch’s sudden departure from the company, the three siblings must grapple for the reigns to the grape kingdom and acquire their own power.

Ebonee Noel will play the role of August King, the middle King sibling and the family’s brilliant marketing whiz who is passionate about vino and is always looking for new ways to expand the business. Karen LeBlanc will portray Vanessa King, the matriarch of the King family who gave up her career as a news reporter to help run King Estate Wines and has a seemingly picture-perfect marriage with her husband, Reginald. Yanni King Mondschein will play the role of Bridgette Peele, August’s cousin and right-hand who works as the winery’s manager. Rance Nix will portray Dana King, August’s older brother and the savvy CFO of the vineyard.

Production will begin later in 2021 for an early 2022 premiere on OWN.  Source(s):

The Porter

Status:  Pre-Production
Genre:  Drama
Directors:  Charles Officer, R.T. Thorne
Studio(s):  Inferno Pictures, Sphere Media’s Sienna Films
Cast:  Aml Ameen, Ronnie Rowe, Jr., Mouna Traoré

Details:  CBC, Canada’s public broadcaster, and BET+ are collaborating on The Porter (working title), an original drama series about a group of railway workers who unite to form the world’s first Black union.

Story:  Set in the 1920s and inspired by real events, The Porter follows the journeys of four ambitious souls who hustle, dream, cross borders and confront barriers in the fight for liberation – on and off the railways that crossed North America.  It is a gripping story of empowerment and idealism that highlights the moment when railway workers from both Canada and the United States joined together to give birth to the world’s first Black union.

Ameen will portray ‘Junior Massey,’ an intelligent, smooth, ambitious and fearless risk taker and war veteran employed as a porter with the Transcontinental Railroad; alongside Rowe Jr. as fellow porter ‘Zeke Garrett,’ Junior’s friend and war buddy, who is calm, thoughtful and persistent to a fault in his fight for integration. Traoré will play ‘Marlene Massey,’ Junior’s wife who works with the Black Cross Nurses, an offshoot of Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association, risking resources and reputation to help her community and reach her full potential.

Set primarily in Montreal, Chicago and Detroit as the world rebuilds after the First World War, The Porter depicts the Black community in St. Antoine, Montreal – known, at the time, as the “Harlem of the North.”  They’re young, gifted and Black, from Canada, the Caribbean, and the U.S. via the Underground Railroad and through the Great Migration, and they find themselves thrown together north and south of the color line, in an era that boasts anything is possible – but if change isn’t coming for them, they will come for it. By any means necessary.

The Porter is set to become Canada’s biggest Black-led television production and has been greenlit for 2021/2022.  Source(s):  Deadline;;

Chevalier de Saint-Georges

Status:  Pre-Production

Genre:  Biography

Director:  Stephen Williams

Studio(s):  Fox Searchlight Pictures

Cast:  Kelvin Harrison, Jr. (Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges)

Details:  According to Deadline, Kelvin Harrison Jr. is currently in talks to play the classical French musical prodigy Joseph de Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges in an upcoming film from Searchlight Pictures.  Born in 1745 in the French Caribbean, De Saint-Georges was the illegitimate son of an African slave and a French plantation owner. He rose to improbable heights in French society, dazzling as both a violinist and composer, and a champion fencer.  An ill-fated love affair with a French noblewoman, and a falling out with Marie Antoinette and her court led to his untimely downfall.  Source:  Deadline.  Photo Source:

Black Don’t Crack

Status:  Pre-Production
Genre:  Comedy
Director:  Kelly Park
Studio(s):  JuVee Production, ABC Signature
Cast:  Tisha Campbell, Essence Atkins, Sherri Shepherd, Tahj Mowry, Beth Grant, Isaiah Mustafa

Details:  Essence Atkins and Tisha Campbell are set as the two remaining leads opposite Sherri Shepherd, Tahj Mowry, Beth Grant and Isaiah Mustafa as series regulars in the pilot from writer/executive producer Regina Hicks and executive producers Viola Davis, Julius Tennon and Larry Wilmore.

Story:   Black Don’t Crack follows three former sorority sisters, played by Shepherd, Atkins and Campbell, who lost touch after college and reunite during a pivotal point in their lives. They realize sometimes it’s okay to crack and when you do, no one will be there for you like your friends.

Shepherd plays Angela Wright: A native New Yorker somewhere between 45 and death, but it’s hard to tell because “black don’t crack.” She’s a single mom who put aside her musical dreams to raise her son after her husband died. She’s been holding it down alone for years, taking care of her family instead of herself. When she is confronted with a personal crisis, she reunites with her sorority sisters to recapture the passion, ambition and sisterhood of their college glory days.

Atkins stars as Nia Hillis Davis:  A bougie, conservative politician’s wife who has lost touch with her more fun-loving college self. Though she may have many cracks in her perfect facade that she goes to great pains to cover up. While she may be perceived as uptight and snobbish, she’s ultimately a lovable neurotic who is our voice of positivity, even if a lot of the times, she’s not sure what’s going on.

Campbell is playing Tasha Marks: A hip and fabulous Atlanta restaurateur who starts trends instead of following them. She holds nothing back and is brutally honest (sometimes to a fault) with her friends, but has been avoiding a truth in her own life. She’s achieved the perfect professional life and insists that she needs no man in her life to interfere with the career she’s worked so hard to create.

Mowry is Khalil Grant Angela’s (Shepard) 20 something son: He is a recent college grad who is full of big ideas and big dreams, but has yet to get any of his start-up companies off the ground. A bit of slow starter at life, he lives in his mother’s basement and still relies on her to do his laundry and front him rent money. He is fiercely protective of his family and is gradually growing into a responsible adult.

Grant is Nancy, Angela’s (Shepard) sharp-tongued mother-in-law: She adores her grandson but is tougher on her daughter-in-law – she can be abrasive, demanding, and unaware of her prejudices. While Nancy can be a thorn in Angela’s side, the truth is they need each other. At the end of the day, the things they share — the loss of a husband, their love for Khalil – keep them from killing each other.

Mustafa is Charles Daniels, co-owner with Tasha of a restaurant and bar in Atlanta: Charles is a former pro-football player who is handsome and oozes charm and swagger. He’s full of stories from back in his glory days and is comfortable being the center of attention. He could be perceived as cocky, but he’s ultimately the kind of dependable, good guy you want in your corner.  Sources:,  Photo source:

Easy Rawlins TV Series

Status:  Announced
Genre:  Drama
Director:  Sylvain White (first episode)
Studio(s):   Amblin Television
Cast:  TBA

Details:  Easy Rawlins is getting his own TV series.  Amblin Television is teaming with author Walter Mosley to bring the beloved character from his best-selling gritty detective book series to the screen.  A network/streaming service is not yet attached.

Mosley has authored more than 60 books, including 15 novels and a collection of shorts featuring the Rawlins character.  Ezekiel ‘Easy’ Rawlins, previously brought to life by Denzel Washington in the 1995 feature Devil in a Blue Dress, is a Black World War II Army veteran turned hard-boiled private eye. The series will be set in 1950s Los Angeles and will honor the detective genre, while also exploring the racial inequalities and social injustice experienced by Black people and other people of color. Sources:  Deadline.