In This Issue
Showtime's "The Chi" is set to return for its sixth season next week. As one of the most successful, long-running Black television shows currently on air, much of the credit goes to the Black writers and creatives behind the screen.
The ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike has unfortunately left many writers out of work, and the duration of the strike remains uncertain. Despite this challenge, we hope that a resolution is reached sooner rather than later.
As we eagerly await the upcoming season, we wanted to take a moment to appreciate the Black writers and creatives who have contributed to "The Chi" and played a significant role in making us fall in love with our July 2023 Cover Stars.
Leading the way is Rick Famuyiwa, a Nigerian-American filmmaker and director, who has been the executive producer of the show since its inception. While his name might not be immediately recognizable to all, he is undeniably one of the greatest filmmakers our culture has ever witnessed. His debut film, Black cult classic 'The Wood,' earned him an NAACP nomination and was picked up for a reboot by Showtime in 2021.
Additionally, he directed the movie Dope, starring our June 2023 Cover Star Shameik Moore and A$AP Rocky—marking the acting debut of the rapper. Moreover, Famuyiwa serves as the producer behind Disney+'s immensely popular series, The Mandalorian. His creative prowess is akin to that of King Midas, turning everything he touches into gold, and we are thrilled to see what magic he brings to "The Chi" this season.
Ayanna Floyd Davis
Ayanna Floyd Davis has earned a reputation for her thought-provoking storytelling and skillful development of diverse characters. Throughout her career, she has consistently demonstrated a commitment to crafting compelling narratives that delve into complex social issues, and this was evident in her work on "The Chi".
Serving as the showrunner for season 2, she expertly built emotional connections between the audience and the characters. Viewers witnessed Emmitt's journey towards becoming a better father while navigating the challenges of love. Ronnie's struggle with guilt and mental issues after committing murder was also depicted with depth and authenticity. Ayanna Floyd Davis possesses a unique ability to make the audience feel intimately connected to the characters, which has undoubtedly contributed to the series' success.
Justin Hillian, a remarkable TV writer and showrunner, has left an indelible mark on the television landscape. Notably, he made significant contributions as a writer and co-executive producer for the critically acclaimed TV series "Snowfall," starring Damson Idris. The show delves into the complexities of the 1980s crack epidemic, masterfully interweaving intricate characters and compelling plot lines that have enthralled audiences, cementing its status as an iconic series. His genius was also brought to "The Chi" during season three when he assumed the role of showrunner. True to form, he delivered a dark yet captivating season, adding to the show's success.
Derek Dudley, a native Chicagoan, has been an instrumental producer on the show since its debut. His commitment to authenticity has resonated deeply with the show's fans, who appreciate this essential element. The success of the show has opened doors for Dudley, leading to his role as one of the partners in a groundbreaking $100 million project, the Regal Mile Studios. This ambitious endeavor will establish a "state-of-the-art media campus" spanning 380,000 square feet on the south side of Chicago.