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Disney’s Onyx Collective has greenlit its first scripted series.
The recently launched brand, dedicated to releasing work from creators of color and underrepresented voices, has ordered Reasonable Doubt, a legal drama from executive producers Kerry Washington and Larry Wilmore and writer/exec producer Raamla Mohamed (Scandal, Little Fires Everywhere). The series, which will stream on Hulu, will star Emayatzy Corinealdi (Middle of Nowhere, Ballers) as a defense attorney.
“It’s hard to imagine a more ideal creative partnership for our first Onyx Collective scripted series,” said Tara Duncan, president of Freeform and Onyx Collective. “Raamla and Kerry came to us with their passion project and a strong vision for a dynamic series that will surely get an audience talking. And to cast Emayatzy, who embodies the complexities of the lead character beautifully, was a huge get. We’re excited to bring this series to life.”
Reasonable Doubt centers on Jax Stewart (Corinealdi), a lawyer with questionable ethics and wild interpretations of the law — who’s also the most brilliant and fearless defense attorney in Los Angeles and bucks the justice system every chance she gets.
Washington will direct the first episode of the series. She executive produces with her Simpson Street partner Pilar Savone, Mohamed and Wilmore (via his Wilmore Films). Defense attorney Shawn Holley and Jon Leshay are co-exec producers. ABC Signature, where Mohamed and Simpson Street have overall deals, is producing.
“I am beyond thrilled that my first television show will be part of the Onyx Collective. As a 2012 alum of the ABC/Disney Writer’s Program, I’ve been in the Disney family for a minute now and it has always been my dream to be able to create the kind of series based on people that look like me and made by people who look like me,” said Mohamed. “I am grateful to Tara Duncan, Shawn Holley, Simpson Street, Wilmore Films and ABC Signature for believing in this project from the beginning and trusting it in my hands. And I’m especially excited to be working with Kerry as a director on what is our third project together. As the kids say, I love this for us.”
Added Washington, “Simpson Street was founded with the belief that we are each the lead character in the story of our lives regardless of who we are, where we are born, what we believe or who we love. Each of us deserves to be and to see ourselves at the center of the narrative. It’s a privilege to partner with Onyx, a brand dedicated to centering creators of color and underrepresented voices, on their first scripted drama series. I am excited to be working with the great Larry Wilmore and to be once again collaborating with the brilliant Raamla Mohamed, who will lead an all-Black writers room on a series led by the phenomenal Emayatzy Corinealdi. This is a proud moment for all of us at Simpson Street and we could not ask for better partners all around.”
Mohamed is repped by UTA and Ziffren Brittenham. Washington is repped by CAA, Washington Square Arts, Hansen Jacobson and The Lede Company. Wilmore is with 3 Arts, UTA and Hansen Jacobson.
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