Disney Channel is bringing something fresh and new to the small screen.
Saturdays is a single-camera comedy about a young girl and her competitive skating crew. Marsai Martin from Black-ish is the writer-executive producer through her Genius Entertainment, writer-executive producer Norman Vance Jr. (Roll Bounce, Girlfriends), Charles Stone III (Drumline, black-ish) will direct.
Written by Vance and played by Danielle Jalade, the pilot spotlights’ Paris Johnson. A 13-year-old girl who has spent most of her life roller-skating. It follows Paris, who, since age four, has been acuminating her skills on the nice, clean, parquet floors of Saturdays, a local skating rink owned and operated by a former 90’s hip-hop back-up dancer. Saturdays is the place to show and prove with its galaxy-painted rink, neon lights, and killer DJ spinning the most poppin’ music. Paris is the shot caller of a skate crew and is determined to take them all the way. However, she does have sickle cell disease, and when it flares up, it’ll take every ounce of determination to prove doubters wrong, including her worried family.
Family Times Omar Gooding and Golden Brooks (Girlfriends) will play Paris’ parents, Cal and Deb, Jermaine Harris (The Map of Tiny Perfect Things) will portray her older brother and aspiring D.J., London. Daria Johns (Nappily Ever After) and newcomer Samantha Smith have also been cast as Paris’s best friends and skating partners, Simone and Roxy, respectively. Grammy-nominated hip-hop artist Yolanda “Yo-Yo” Whitaker will recur as roller rink owner Duchess.
“When we met with Marsai about this project, we couldn’t have been more impressed with her passion for diverse storytelling and commitment to female empowerment.” Said Rafael Garcia, vice president, Development, Disney Branded Television. “we’re extremely excited to team up with Norman and the Genius Entertainment team to tap into the roller-skating culture in a way that’s true, authentic, and aspirational for our audience.”
Genius Entertainment was founded by Executive Producer and Black-ish actress Marsai Martin with Joshua and Carol Martin. The production company creates stories meant to inspire, illuminate and celebrate the diverse experiences of girls and people of color. Martin starred in, and executive produced the 2019 feature film Little. She portrays Diane Johnson on black-ish, a role that has earned her seven NAACP Image Awards.
Photo Credits: TeenVogue