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Disney is unveiling a new content brand dedicated to the work of creators of color and underrepresented creatives.
Led by Freeform president Tara Duncan, the new brand — called Onyx Collective — will showcase and debut titles from these creators primarily on Hulu, though other Disney platforms may host offerings from the brand’s voices. Some Onyx Collective titles will be distributed internationally on Disney+ through the company’s Star brand. The first Onyx Collective title? Questlove’s Summer of Soul (…or, When the Revolution Could Not be Televised), purchased by Fox Searchlight and Hulu in February for a record sum for a Sundance-premiering documentary, per Hollywood Reporter sources.
“Our industry is immeasurably enriched by the incredible talents of emerging and established creators of color. Launching Onyx Collective allows us to be the best partners to those creators, providing them with the support they need to do their best work,” Dana Walden, chairman of entertainment at Walt Disney Television, said in a statement. “Tara Duncan is a gifted executive with fantastic instincts. With her leading this talented team, we have the opportunity to tell transformative stories that authentically represent our audience and are essential to our success.” (Duncan will continue to lead Freeform while working on the new brand.)
In addition to Summer of Soul, the upcoming docuseries adaptation of the New York Times Magazine‘s “1619 Project,” produced by Oprah Winfrey, will also be an Onyx Collective project. Insecure star Natasha Rothwell, who recently signed an overall deal with ABC Signature, and Ryan Coogler’s Proximity will additionally work with the Onyx Collective brand.
“We’re building a home where creators of color are inspired, empowered and have unparalleled access to reach audiences around the world,” Duncan said in a statement. “This artist-first approach will make Onyx Collective synonymous with entertaining, brave and bold ideas told from a distinct point of view. I’m humbled by the opportunity and all of the possibilities.”
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