Kenya Barris is heading to Netflix!
The black-ish creator who left ABC last month has inked an overall deal with the streaming service with plans to create new content under his Khalabo Ink Society production company.
Check out the official press release:
Netflix welcomes Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated writer and producer Kenya Barris. Barris has entered into a multi-year overall deal to produce new series exclusively at Netflix, starting today, August 16. Under the deal, Barris will produce all projects through his production company, Khalabo Ink Society.
As the creator of the hit, Peabody award-winning comedy series black-ish, along with its successful spin-off series Grown-ish, and the writer of last summer’s comedy blockbuster Girls Trip, Barris has continually demonstrated his ability to tell stories about the Black experience that resonate with all audiences. With an innate sense for what is funny, truthful and timely, Barris will continue to create stories that reflect culture through an urban, youth and female focused lens.
“Kenya Barris is one of our great modern storytellers,” said Cindy Holland, Vice President, Original Content at Netflix. “Kenya uses his voice to make audiences more aware of the world around them, while simultaneously making them laugh. His honesty, comedic brilliance and singular point of view, combined with the creative freedom he will enjoy at Netflix, promises to create powerful new stories for all our members around the world.”
“When my agents reached out to me about this little garage start-up called Netflix, I wasn’t sure what to think,” said Barris. “But after I talked to Ted and Cindy, I started to believe that maybe this mom-and-pop shop with only 130 million subscribers might just be something… so I decided to take a swing… a leap of faith if you will, and take a chance with the new kids on the block.”
Kenya Barris officially left ABC in July and the network’s decision to ban an episode of black-ish that centered around the NFL’s protests against police brutality could have been at the root of it.
The network’s president, Channing Dungey said, however, Barris will maintain a broader connection to the network.
“First of all, Kenya’s broader relationship with the Disney-ABC Television Group goes on, because he still is very involved in “Black-ish,” he has “Grown-ish,” he has a new show, “Besties.” she told Variety.
“So there still is an ongoing dynamic with Kenya. I think creatively for writers there is a cycle and I think part of what happened for Kenya, outside of this episode — because with this episode, we had all been excited to have this one stand alongside episodes like “Lemons” and “Juneteenth,” and ultimately we all felt, Kenya, the studio, the network, that we hadn’t got to this place creatively where we were telling the story in a way that felt like it could stand alongside those, so the decision was made to shelve it. I think, and you would have to speak to him directly, he had come to a place creatively where creatively he wanted to do some things outside of what broadcast allows you to do, where you don’t have to worry about act breaks, and you don’t have to worry about standards and practices, and I understand that.”