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Dulé Hill and Laura Kariuki have joined the cast of the pilot, which centers on a Black family in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1986. The show, from writer Saladin K. Patterson (The Big Bang Theory, The Bernie Mac Show) and executive producer Lee Daniels, is based on the beloved 1988-93 series of the same name.
Hill and Kariuki join Elisha “EJ” Williams, who’s playing the lead role of 12-year-old Dean Williams, and Saycon Sengbloh, who plays Lillian, the family’s mother.
Hill (The West Wing, Pysch) plays Dean’s father, Bill, a music professor by day and funk musician by night, described by adult Dean as “the baddest guy I knew.” Bill wants his family and their middle-class Black neighborhood to remain self-sufficient and backs that sentiment up with action.
Kariuki, a recent graduate of Oklahoma City University and the ABC Discovers showcase, will play Kim, Dean’s bright and confident older sister. She and Dean have a good relationship, but she’s starting to rebel against her parents’ plans for her to attend college. Kariuki currently recurs on The CW’s Black Lightning.
Disney’s 20th Television is producing The Wonder Years. Patterson, Daniels, original series star Fred Savage (who’s directing the pilot) and Lee Daniels Entertainment president Marc Velez executive produce. Neal Marlens, who co-created the 1988 series, is a consultant.
Hill is repped by ICM Partners, Washington Square Films and Fuller Law. Kariuki is repped by A3 Artists Agency.
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