Ashton Sanders (Moonlight), Shameik Moore (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, The Get Down), Siddiq Saunderson (Messiah), Marcus Callender (Power), Zolee Griggs (Ballers) and Erika Alexander (Get Out, Black Lightning) are set to star in Hulu’s Wu-Tang: An American Saga, a 10-episode drama from Wu-Tang Clan frontman The RZA, writer Alex Tse (Superfly) and Imagine Television. In addition, Chris Robinson (Star, The New Edition Story) has been tapped to direct and co-executive produce the pilot episode.
Created and written by The RZA and Tse, the series is based on the Wu-Tang Clan, one of the most influential groups in hip-hop history, and will explore and expand the band’s world.
Set in early ’90s New York at the height of the crack cocaine epidemic, the show tracks the Clan’s formation, a vision of Bobby Diggs (Sanders) aka The RZA, who strives to unite a dozen young, black men that are torn between music and crime but eventually rise to become the unlikeliest of American success stories.
Sanders’ Bobby is creative and thoughtful underneath a hardened exterior. Bobby Diggs is accustomed to street life but can’t let go of his dreams about music. He’d rather mess with loops and records, but knows he has to step up in order to provide for his family. Having been raised on a farm by his uncle, Bobby has a different outlook on life than his friends and brothers. We’ll come to know him as hip-hop icon The RZA.
Moore will portray Sha. Down on his luck but would never tell anyone about it, Sha Rader is a gunner for drug dealer Power Grant, a kid who grew up on the streets who now wields a gun without blinking. He’s still got some innocence to him, however, and his friendship with Bobby makes it tough to carry out his orders.
Saunderson is Dennis. 19 years old but already a man, Dennis “D-Love” Coles is a loving kid who would do anything to protect his friends and family. When he’s not taking care of his two younger brothers while his mom drinks herself to sleep, Dennis serves as the right-hand man to Bobby’s older brother Divine in their increasingly competitive drug dealing business based out of the Stapleton area. Dennis takes his role in Divine’s crew seriously; he’ll step up to any challenge if he feels threatened. But he brings that sense of loyalty to his other relationships, too—and has an untapped talent that will help him grow into the artist Ghostface Killah.
Callender portrays Power. Quiet and focused to an unsettling degree, Power Grant is the top dog of Park Hill, an area in the projects that he and his gang control as the chief rivals to Divine’s crew in Stapleton.
Griggs plays Shurrie. Multi-talented and optimistic, Shurrie might be the second-youngest of four, but she’s basically the woman of the house. She’s taught herself how to care for others and take care of any issues around the home, all the while staying focused on school. Shurrie is in a relationship with Dennis that no one can know about.
Alexander will portray Linda, an overworked mother of four who has been through hell and back. Now rid of her abusive husband, Linda spends most of her time at the rib shop working. She knows her relationship with her children has suffered, but has to put on a brave face and go to work in spite of it.
Imagine’s Brian Grazer and Francie Calfo will executive produce with Tse and Wu-Tang Clan members The RZA and Method Man. Fellow Wu-Tang Clan members Ghostface Killa, Inspectah Deck, Masta Killa and GZA as well as the Estate of Ol’ Dirty Bastard, will serve as consulting producers. James Seidman will oversee the project for Imagine.
Saunderson is repped by Innovative Artists and Gartner/Green Entertainment.
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