Laurence Fishburne to Star in ‘Roots’ Remake for A&E Networks

Laurence Fishburne Roots
Amanda Edwards/WireImage

Laurence Fishburne has been cast as Alex Haley in A+E Networks’ “Roots” remake, Dirk Hoogstra, History channel’s exec VP & general manager, announced Wednesday.

Haley is the author of the novel “Roots: The Saga of an American Family,” an American family origin story based around the life of Kunta Kinte. The “Roots” remake will be an original, contemporary production, incorporating material from Haley’s novel, as well as carefully researched new scholarship of the time. Haley died in 1992.

“Roots” will be simulcast on A&E, History and Lifetime in 2016.

The Emmy-winning actor currently appears on NBC’s drama “Hannibal” and ABC’s half-hour comedy “Black-ish,” on which he also serves as executive producer. On the bigscreen, Fishburne will next be seen in Warner Bros. Pictures’ “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.”

“Roots” is described as a historical portrait of American slavery recounting the journey of one family’s will to survive, endure and ultimately carry on their legacy despite enormous hardship and inhumanity. The narrative spans multiple generations, beginning with young Kunta Kinte, who is captured in his homeland in the Gambia and transported in brutal conditions to colonial America, where he’s sold into slavery. Throughout the series, the family continues to face adversity while bearing witness and contributing to notable events in U.S. history — including the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, slave uprisings and eventual emancipation.

The scripted event series is an A+E Studios production in association with Marc Toberoff and the Wolper Organization, the company that produced the original miniseries. Will Packer, Toberoff, Marc Wolper, Lawrence Konner and Mark Rosenthal serve as executive producers. LeVar Burton and Korin Huggins are co-executive producers. Konner, Rosenthal, Alison McDonald, and Charles Murray are writing. Hoogstra, Arturo Interian and Michael Stiller serve as executives in charge of production for History. “Roots” is distributed internationally by A+E Networks under the A+E Studios International banner.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 7

Leave a Reply

7 Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Mary Murrsy says:

    Hello,

    Will there be any footage in the remake of “Roots” that will include any of the Murray descendents that are in the book written by Alex, any Interviews with family members and/or parts in the remake?

    Thank you
    M Murray

  2. Tlc Kerne says:

    Wow! The remake of a work of lies. The merchants and traders of other people misery are still in business and business is better than ever. Perhaps? The remake of lies will show the majority of African slaves were young children and teenagers. Children, the future of Africa violently separated from family. Many died in captivity. In transit, the sick and dead thrown overboard. That would be an excellent segment for a show open.

  3. Looks like Fishburne has caught the TV bug. Sad to see Hannibal ending its NBC run though, a brave and interesting TV programme.

  4. There is a whole new generation who probably didn’t see it. So, in that regard, it’s good. It will star ppl who are more relevant to a new audience. However, there are so many other notable pioneers and trailblazers whose stories have never been told. We are pitching the story of my great-grandfather, Joseph H. Rainey the first Black Congressman…whose journey and accomplishments have never been publicized. It’s an amazing and inspirational story.

  5. Ann says:

    Why do you need to REMAKE Roots? Is there nothing else to say about the African American community???????????????????????????????

  6. TONY says:

    Lets not remake this…
    What more can we do with this?
    It was done well the first time.

  7. Nanny Mo says:

    Yawn!

More TV News from Variety

Loading