Role Call: HBO Max Adds More Cast Members to Issa Rae’s New Joint; Euphoria and High on the Hog Renewed for Season 2

Role Call: HBO Max Adds More Cast Members to Issa Rae’s New Joint; Euphoria and High on the Hog Renewed for Season 2

Idris Elba is open to weird CGI, The Root Co-Founder Henry Louis Gates Jr.’s show renewed for eighth season, Courtney Kemp signs eight-figure deal with Netflix

We may earn a commission from links on this page.
Issa Rae attends the BET Awards 2021 on June 27, 2021; JT and Yung Miami of City Girls performs on stage during Rolling Loud on July 23, 2021
Issa Rae attends the BET Awards 2021 on June 27, 2021; JT and Yung Miami of City Girls performs on stage during Rolling Loud on July 23, 2021
Photo: Paras Griffin; Rich Fury (Getty Images)

Hot damn ho, here we go again with another Role Call…well, actually the last time for one Tonja Renée Stidhum, whose last day at The Root is today. Yes, she is writing this lede as an assist to Bella Morais and Shanelle Genai and referring to herself in third person.

Anyway, first up is the woman who loses hella sleep...Issa Rae! Her upcoming series Rap Sh*t is currently in production and recently announced additional folks to the cast! According to Deadline, the upcoming series loosely based on the City Girls added Daniel Augustin (Grey’s Anatomy, David Makes Man), Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut (Cruel Summer), Amandla Jahava (DMZ) and Jaboukie Young-White (The Daily Show, Dating & New York) to the recurring cast.

Per Deadline, Rap Sh*t is “written by Rae and starring Aida Osman and KaMillion. Rap Sh*t follows two estranged high school friends from Miami, Shawna (Osman) and Mia (KaMillion), who reunite to form a rap group.” Yes, y’all, the show is music-infused TV! It’s like a Role Call/Mic Drop crossover!

And with that, I say goodbye. Enjoy the rest of the slideshow… *mic drop*

Advertisement

2 / 13

PBS Announces Season Eight of Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates Jr.

PBS Announces Season Eight of Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates Jr.

Dr. Henry Louis Gates speaks during the PBS segment of the Summer 2019 Television Critics Association Press Tour 2019 at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on July 29, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California.
Dr. Henry Louis Gates speaks during the PBS segment of the Summer 2019 Television Critics Association Press Tour 2019 at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on July 29, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California.
Photo: Amy Sussman (Getty Images)

The Root co-founder and historian Henry Louis Gates Jr. will be returning for a new season of his popular PBS series, Finding Your Roots. The network recently announced the renewal for its eighth season that will feature ten new episodes showcasing guests who have “excelled in a wide array of fields, each with ancestral stories that touch on the human experience and bring insight into how they became the trailblazers they are today.” Some of those guests include Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Terry Crews, Hamilton star Leslie Odom Jr., Queen & Slim director Lena Waithe, One Night in Miami director and Watchmen star Regina King, The United States vs. Billie Holiday director Lee Daniels, fashion icon André Leon Talley, activists Brittany Packnett Cunningham and Anita Hill. Season 8 is set to premiere sometime in January 2022.

Advertisement

3 / 13

Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis Named as 2021 Honorees for Grammys On the Hill 20th Anniversary

Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis Named as 2021 Honorees for Grammys On the Hill 20th Anniversary

Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis take part in SiriusXM’s Virtual Town Hall with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis hosted by Stephen Hill at SiriusXM Studios on July 27, 2021 in New York City.
Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis take part in SiriusXM’s Virtual Town Hall with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis hosted by Stephen Hill at SiriusXM Studios on July 27, 2021 in New York City.
Photo: Cindy Ord (Getty Images)

The Recording Academy will be honoring music legends Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis as this year’s Grammys On the Hill recipients. Per a press release sent to The Root, the premier annual event celebrates the intersection of music and advocacy by “bringing together congressional leaders and music makers to recognize those who have led the fight for creators’ rights.” Jam and Lewis’ efforts in the fight for creators’ rights span across decades, as does their songwriting and production credits which boast hits from myriad artists such as Janet Jackson, Mariah Carey, Usher, Boyz II Men and more.

“The pandemic has shown us just how crucial it is for the Academy and Congress to work together to find equitable solutions that protect the music community,” said CEO of the Recording Academy Harvey Mason Jr. “We’re thrilled to celebrate the legislators and artists who have improved the environment for creators with the return of GRAMMYs on the Hill — a celebration of the music community and Congress coming together to achieve policy advancements in the name of music.”

Advertisement

4 / 13

Lil Rel Howery Announces Release of New Comedy Album; Nicole Byer Announces First One-Hour Comedy Special With Netflix

Lil Rel Howery Announces Release of New Comedy Album; Nicole Byer Announces First One-Hour Comedy Special With Netflix

Lil Rel Howery, left; Nicole Byer
Lil Rel Howery, left; Nicole Byer
Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Jerod Harris for Comedy Central (Getty Images)

Fatherhood actor and funnyman Lil Rel Howery will be releasing an all-new audio-only comedy album soon. Titled Lil Rel–Humbly Vulnerable: I Said What I Said, per Variety, the upcoming album promises to see Howery “return back to his Chicago standup roots with a set that is reminiscent of his comedy heroes, including Moms Mabley, Redd Foxx and Richard Pryor.” The album will debut exclusively on Pandora on Aug. 17 and on all streaming platforms on Aug. 24. Additionally, Brooklyn Nine-Nine actress and comedian Nicole Byer will be debuting a one-hour comedy special for Netflix. Deadline reports that the untitled upcoming special marks Byer’s first with the streaming giant and is set to be recorded in New York’s Gramercy Theater on September 5.

Advertisement

5 / 13

HBO’s Euphoria Adds Three New Characters to Season 2

HBO’s Euphoria Adds Three New Characters to Season 2

We’re one step closer to finding out what’s happening with season two of HBO’s Euphoria. The fan-favorite paused filming in March 2020 when COVID hit, but the cast is back and better than ever—with three additional members, Minka Kelly, Dominic Fike & Demetrius ‘Lil Meech’ Flenory Jr. According to Deadline, at least one, if not all three, of the characters are recurring. Dominic Fike had auditioned for the show’s first season and even made it to the final round before the character he auditioned for was written out. Fike tells Variety that the character he’s playing reminds him of a version of his younger self.“I don’t have to do much acting,” he tells Variety. “He’s exactly like me. It’s shit I would say and shit I would do.”

Advertisement

6 / 13

Attention, Mr. Perry!

Attention, Mr. Perry!

Image for article titled Role Call: HBO Max Adds More Cast Members to Issa Rae’s New Joint; Euphoria and High on the Hog Renewed for Season 2
Screenshot: YouTube

Known for plastering her face across a big billboard and literally screaming at Tyler Perry to hire her, Raquel Palmer has landed a leading role in Perry’s upcoming show, All The Queen’s Men. Palmer plays “Blue” in the show about Marilyn ‘Madam’ DeVille. According to TMZ, Palmer and Perry have “never talked about the billboard” and “almost pretend it never happened.”

As if we could ever forget.

After being “scolded” by Perry on Instagram for her stunt in 2019, she landed the role anyway—though she doesn’t recommend anyone try this tactic themselves. All The Queen’s Men was announced in March 2021 on BET+. In the teaser, you see flashes of “Madam’s” nightclub, her entourage and a series of sexy male dancers.

The show has yet to announce a release date.

Advertisement

7 / 13

Power Creator Courtney Kemp Signs Eight-Figure Deal With Netflix

Power Creator Courtney Kemp Signs Eight-Figure Deal With Netflix

Courtney A. Kemp attends the “POWER” Season 5 Premiere at Radio City Music Hall on June 28, 2018 in New York City.
Courtney A. Kemp attends the “POWER” Season 5 Premiere at Radio City Music Hall on June 28, 2018 in New York City.
Photo: Nicholas Hunt (Getty Images)

Y’all see that? Eight. Figures.

Kemp has signed a four-year contract with the streaming platform to create a new series with the possibility of increasing to nine figures pending the success of the program. She will also stay on as an executive producer for the spinoff series of Power and will continue to have a say in the creative direction of the show.

According to Deadline, Kemp’s production company, End of Episode, will produce the upcoming Netflix series and each consecutive project will fall under the creative and production banner of the company. “I am incredibly excited to join the Netflix family, and to continue to develop the kind of entertainment that End of Episode is known for—diverse, multilingual, water cooler, social-media fueled series that pack a serious punch,” Kemp states.

Advertisement

8 / 13

Legendary MC Nas Launches Exclusive Concert to “Feed NYC” This Fall

Legendary MC Nas Launches Exclusive Concert to “Feed NYC” This Fall

Nas performs at the 2019 Governors Ball Festival at Randall’s Island on June 02, 2019 in New York City.
Nas performs at the 2019 Governors Ball Festival at Randall’s Island on June 02, 2019 in New York City.
Photo: Noam Galai (Getty Images)

Get your tickets now, because Nas just announced his return to the stage with a concert to benefit City Harvest. Nas will be performing in his hometown of Queens at the Forest Hills Stadium for his first live show in nearly three years. The rapper will be performing tracks from his latest album, Kings Disease II, which dropped last week.

“I am looking forward to returning to [the] stage for a performance in my hometown—especially since it supports a cause [I] care deeply about,” said Nas per a press release provided to The Root. The concert will be an exclusive event for 4000 people with luxurious features such as speakeasy suites, mini-lounges, and lounge-style seating.

Tickets for the show went on sale today for the show taking place on Thursday, September 23. You can purchase tickets here.

Advertisement

9 / 13

Producer Behind Good Times, The Jeffersons and Sanford and Son Norman Lear Will Receive Legend Award at 3rd Annual African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA)

Producer Behind Good Times, The Jeffersons and Sanford and Son Norman Lear Will Receive Legend Award at 3rd Annual African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA)

Image for article titled Role Call: HBO Max Adds More Cast Members to Issa Rae’s New Joint; Euphoria and High on the Hog Renewed for Season 2
Photo: Courtesy of AFFCA

Television icon, trailblazer and legend Norman Lear will receive the appropriately titled Legend Award at this year’s AAFCA. Lear is the genius brains and producer behind shows such as Good Times, The Jeffersons and Sanford and Son, which to this day have a “long-lasting impact [on] diversity and inclusion,” most recently with the reboot and reimagining of One Day At A Time, per a press release provided to The Root. Lear’s career has spanned over 70 years and as he reflects in a press release, “As I reflect on the past 99 years of life, I think of all responsible for helping me make it this far...the brilliant actors, writers, producers and creators who made me laugh in places I didn’t know existed throughout my career.”

Due to the recent spike in COVID cases, the AAFCA will be hosted virtually again this year on Saturday, August 21 at 7:00 pm EST.

Advertisement

10 / 13

High on the Hog: Netflix Greenlights Season Two of Docuseries About African American Cuisine

High on the Hog: Netflix Greenlights Season Two of Docuseries About African American Cuisine

Stephen Satterfield, left, and Jessica B. Harris.
Stephen Satterfield, left, and Jessica B. Harris.
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix

High on the Hog, the culinary docuseries that broke barriers around the importance and influence of African-American cuisine in this country has just been renewed by Netflix for a second season. The critically acclaimed show—adapted from food historian Jessica B. Harris’s book of the same name—delves into the “expansive, eclectic culinary history shaped by slavery, the Civil War, Juneteenth and present day,” per a press release provided to The Root. As we previously reported, writer-host Stephen Satterfield told Condé Nast Traveler: “I hope that it encourages people to think about the origins of their own diets and deepen their understanding and appreciation for their own respective food culture.”

Advertisement

11 / 13

He’s an Echidna…I Thought That Was Obvious

He’s an Echidna…I Thought That Was Obvious

Okay, maybe not, because why in God’s name would we ever assume Idris Elba would be cast as Knuckles The Echidna in Sonic the Hedgehog 2? —But we’re here for it; clearly, after his role in Cats, Elba hasn’t been deterred from weird, semi-live action cartoon movies. His character will be teaming up with Jim Carrey’s Dr. Robotnik “in search [of] an emerald that has the power to both build and destroy civilizations,” according to a leaked press release and The Verge.

Elba announced his role by posting a semi-cryptic Jordan Peele-style Instagram post “​​Knock, knock….. #SonicMovie2 #Knuckles”

All we know is that the movie will be premiering some time next year—and Elba is not opposed to weird CGI roles.

Advertisement

12 / 13

Netflix Announces the Colin in Black & White Release Date

Netflix Announces the Colin in Black & White Release Date

Co-creators Ava DuVernay and Colin Kaepernick launch the limited series Colin in Black & White on October 29, 2021. The six-episode, 30-minute series chronicling Kaepernick’s coming of age story stars Jaden Michael as a young Colin and the challenges around race, class and identity that he faced while being raised as a Black adopted child in a white family.

Advertisement

13 / 13