Lena Waithe & Common To Create Coming-of-Age Drama For Showtime
According to Blackfilm.com, Showtime announced that it has given a pilot order to a one-hour drama created, executive produced and written by Lena Waithe (Dear White People, “Bones”) and executive produced by Grammy and Academy Award winner Common (Selma, Smokin’ Aces). Produced by Fox 21, the untitled project is said to be “a relevant, timely and distinctive coming-of-age story of a young African American male in which just growing up can be a matter of life and death.”matter of life and death.” In addition to Waithe and Common, the pilot will be executive produced byAaron Kaplan(“Secrets and Lies,” “The Mysteries of Laura”) and directed and executive produced byClark Johnson(“Homeland,” “The Wire”) and will begin shooting in Chicago later this year.
“The two creative forces behind the show, both hailing from Chicago’s South Side, give this pilot an unparelled authenticity,” says David Nevins, President, Showtime Networks Inc. “Lena Waithe is an extremely fresh, talented young writer with a unique voice and a deeply thoughtful perspective into the world where she grew up. I immediately gravitated to her script, which is emotional, funny, tragic and relevant, all at once. And, we are so fortunate to have artist and visionary Common for his first producing project in scripted television.” Waithe is a writer, producer and actor who was recently named “one of ten comics to watch” by Variety. She produced the award-winning, top-grossing indie film, Dear White People, which earned a Special Jury Prize at Sundance. She is the creator of the comedy pilot, “Twenties.” Waithe’s writing credits include the drama series“Bones”; the viral video “Sh*t Black Girls Say;” and webisodes about online dating, “Hello Cupid.” She also wrote and directed a short film Save Me that appeared at several indie film festivals.
Born and raised on Chicago’s South Side, Common has garnered multiple Grammy Awards throughout his career. His tenth studio album“Nobody’s Smiling” debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip Hop Chart in 2014. In addition to his award-winning music career, Common has done extensive work in film and television in addition to his multiple written works (“The Mirror and Me,” “I Like You But I Love Me”, and the New York Times best seller, “One Day It’ll All Make Sense”).