Black-ish Showrunner Kenya Barris Signs Deal With Netflix
TWIN: Add Black-ish showrunner Kenya Barris to the growing list of broadcast and cable writers and producers leaving for greener pastures at the SVOD pioneer. Barris’ deal with ABC is set to expire in August.
MCN Take: Barris is the third high-profile broadcast TV producer – and the second from ABC – to bolt for Netflix in recent months. Ryan Murphy left Fox and Shonda Rhimes parted ways with ABC for multi-million-dollar deals with Netflix. Barris, who had several projects in various stages with ABC, also was reportedly upset with the way how ABC handled a controversial episode last season around the practice of NFL players kneeling for the National Anthem. ABC pulled the episode at the last minute, which Barris said at the time was a mutual decision, but apparently set the stage for his departure.
Stranger Things Season 3 Premiere Set for Summer 2019
TWIN: Netflix had hinted that it would wait until summer 2019 to air the premier the popular show, but made it officials at the Television Critics Association presentation.
MCN Take: During her TCA presentation, Netflix’s vice president of original content, Cindy Holland said the show’s creators, Matt and Ross Duffer and Shawn Levy, want to meet the high expectations of the show, and deliver something bigger and better than last year. The show also is expected to have more extensive special effects.
Critics Say Netflix’s Insatiable Promotes Fat Shaming
TWIN: Twitter critics came out in force to denounce a new made-for-Netflix series starring former Disney Channel star Debbie Ryan – Insatiable – claiming it promotes fat-shaming in its depiction of an overweight high-schooler who slims down after suffering at the hands of bullies.
MCN Take: More than 120,000 people signed a petition to cancel the show. Netflix has called the show, in which Ryan seeks payback for the people who bullied her a “dark, twisted revenge comedy.”
Oscar Winner Octavia Spencer to Appear as Beauty Mogul C.J. Walker
TWIN: Octavia Spencer, who won the 2012 Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for The Help, will star as hair-care products pioneer C.J. Walker in Madam C.J. Walker.
MCN Take: The eight episode series is based on the book On Her Own Ground by A’Lelia Bundles. Spencer and basketball star LeBron James will serve as producers. Walker, the first self-made black female millionaire, was the child of former slaves and devoted her life to philanthropy and social activism, counting among her friends icons like W.E.B. DuBois and Booker T. Washington.