Kenya Barris, creator of the hit series Black-ish, announced on Friday that the series has been renewed for its eighth and final season.
“To ALL the people in the world I love, honor, respect and care for it is both exciting and bittersweet to share that black-ish been RENEWED by ABC for it’s EIGHTH… and FINAL SEASON,” Barris wrote in part on Instagram. “In this day and age it is rare to get to decide when your show should come to an end, and we are grateful along with ABC to be able to make this final season exactly what we’d hoped for – and to do it with the entire and AMAZINGLY STELLAR cast coming back to close this chapter out with us the right way!”
The show debuted on ABC in 2014 and stars Anthony Anderson as Andre “Dre” Johnson and Tracee Ellis Ross as Rainbow Johnson, a character inspired by Barris’ wife of 20 years, Dr. Rania “Rainbow” Barris.
For the show’s legion of loyal fans it was hard to hear the news Ross also shared about the show coming to an end in an IG post, writing: “Hard to imagine that it’s been 7 yrs of @blackishabc & this will be our 8th & final season. The joy & pride in what we made is immeasurable. Thx 4 laughing, crying & growing with the Johnsons! To the #blackish family: my love 4 you runs deep! Stay tuned y’all. It’s gonna be good!”
Barris left ABC in 2018 over creative clashes with the network. ABC’s decision to ban an episode of Black-ish that centered around the NFL and police brutality was said to have been at the root of his exit.
Yet, he shared very positive and reflective words about his years with ABC.
“I’m very grateful to Patrick Moran and his team at ABC Studios, who have supported me every step of the way as I created the worlds of Black-ish, Grown-ish and now Besties. It has been an incredible ride including a Peabody and Golden Globe win, Emmy nominations, and many other accolades,” Barris said in a statement at the time.
But most importantly, they’ve allowed me to realize my dream of creating my own shows and I’m so proud of the work we’ve done together. No matter what, the studio has never wavered in their support of my creative vision.”
Following his announcement, then ABC president Channing Dungey noted that Barris would continue to maintain a 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,” Dungey told Variety.
In August 2018, it was announced that Barris had signed a three-year overall deal with Netflix to produce series exclusively for the streaming giant. The deal was reportedly valued at roughly $100M.