Lena Waithe is doing the damn thing. After a series on Showtime, a movie on Netflix, and an Emmy under her belt, she’s still making moves in the entertainment industry.
Yesterday, TBS announced that they’d ordered a pilot for a series Waithe pitched called “Twenties.”
The show will center around a queer Black girl and her two best friends who are straight. Waithe said she wrote the show back in 2009.
“I always wanted to tell a story where a queer black woman was the protagonist and I’m so grateful to TBS for giving me a platform to tell this story. Queer black characters have been the sidekick for long enough, it’s time for us to finally take the lead.”
Waithe will serve as executive producer for the show.
If the name sounds familiar, there’s a reason for that.
“Twenties” is based on Waithe’s YouTube series by the same name. I knew there was something special about it immediately but apparently, networks weren’t quick to jump on board. As we reported, back in 2013, Waithe expressed her frustrations about networks showing some interest in the show but not following through with it, saying:
A lot of networks read the script and loved it, but they either thought there wasn’t an audience for it or that it already existed. Of course I became extremely frustrated because I knew neither of those things were true. So I realized I had to show these network executives that TWENTIES was one of a kind and that there was nothing on TV like it. And I figured the best way to do that was to shoot a pilot presentation, which meant we would shoot a few pivotal scenes from the script, edit them together, and give people a sense of how the show would look and feel. Lucky for me, Justin Simien (writer/director DEAR WHITE PEOPLE) offered to direct it and Flavor Unit was willing to pay for it. Now I had the opportunity to show people what I was going for instead of trying to explain it to them. My plan wasn’t just to show it to executives, but to show it to the world so that the people could have a voice in this as well. And just so we’re clear: this is not a web series! I repeat this is not a web series. Not that there’s anything wrong with doing a web series. I’ve done one. My goal is to partner with a network that understands what I’m going for.
After that, BET also developed a pilot for the show in 2014 but things didn’t pan out.
But it seems after Waithe’s success as of late, TBS is ready to put some money behind the idea.
Yesterday, Waithe shared her thoughts about the announcement on her Twitter page.
Congratulations to Lena Waithe! I can’t wait to watch.