“For Colored Boys” is a dramatic web series created, written and directed by award winning filmmaker Stacey Muhammad of Wildseed Films and Executive Produced by veteran award-winning actor and producer, Isaiah Washington and esteemed scholar, writer, activist, and television host, Marc Lamont Hill.
Inspired by the highly acclaimed 1975 choreopoem “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf” by Ntozake Shange, For Colored Boys is a series of short stories that follow the lives of African American men from various walks of life as they navigate and overcome challenges, face their fears, find their truth, mend broken relationships, find love, build families and inspire the lives of many.
The first season of For Colored Boys, subtitled REDEMPTION, follows the life of Benjamin Boyd, Sr. (Robbie Morgan) who upon release from prison seeks to reunite his family by rekindling his relationship with wife, “Lisa” (Lauren Hooper) and reassuming his role as father to his teenage daughter, Sidney (Kai Muhammad) and 20 year old son, “E” (Julito McCullum). A talented yet somewhat troubled young man, “E” has had to shoulder a tremendous amount of responsibility during his father’s incarceration. Returning home, Benjamin finds his son is no longer a boy, but a man unwilling to acknowledge or accept the presence of his father.
In a recent interview with Essence, Stacey Muhammad discussed the series:
ESSENCE.com: What about Ntozake Shange For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Isn’t Enuf made you want to create a dramatic web series about Black men?
Stacey Muhammad: For Colored Girls is a fearless and passionate sharing of the joys and pains of Black womanhood. In truth it took me years to appreciate this work. I personally needed to give myself permission to acknowledge the similarities between myself and the women in these stories without judgment or shame. Like many Black women, I’d been taught in, spiritual spaces, that my voice and experiences didn’t matter much. Rediscovering For Colored Girls… gave me the space to scream, cry, laugh, dance, shout, and get it all out. Along that journey I was inspired to, as best as I could, craft stories “for colored boys” which would also fearlessly and passionately provide a space for Black men to get it all out. As an activist, context is key and I’m not interested in ever creating a piece of artistic expression without context.
ESSENCE.com: Why did you decide to launch the web series on YouTube? Why not more traditional platforms?
Muhammad: We knew early on that most web series launch on YouTube. As independent content creators we have, at least initially, some limitations in terms of what’s available for launching a series. We weighed a few offers and ultimately decided that we had a better chance releasing our content independently and securing a distributor and possibly a network deal through our executive producers.