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WGN America’s “Underground” Timely, Relevant PREVIEWS

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MONSTERS AND CRITICSI think the story of the Underground Railroad is just so exciting and thrilling and hasn’t been told, and it is one it was the first integrated civil rights movement in America, and I think that that’s the important thing to really highlight again today.- Misha Green

 

“Underground” follows a group of courageous men and women who use their ingenuity, power, and perseverance to attempt the greatest escape in history and break free, despite the dire consequences that awaited them on the other side.

 

At Winter tour TCA (Television Critics’ Association) the WGN panel included the “Underground” creative team, executive producer, Akiva Goldsman; creators, writers, and executive producers, Joe Pokaski, and Misha Green; executive producer, John Legend; executive producer, Mike Jackson; and executive producer and director, Anthony Hemmingway.

 

Underground, Season 1, Episode 105 Photo Credit: /Sony Pictures Television

Underground, Season 1, Episode 105

 

WGN America’s “Underground,” tells the story of revolutionaries of the Underground Railroad who use their perseverance to attempt the greatest escape in history despite the unknown and potentially dire consequences that awaited them on the other side. The compelling series focuses on a group of courageous men and women who band together for the fight of their lives and for their freedom.

 

It all starts with Noah (Aldis Hodge), a courageous blacksmith who covertly organizes a small group of his fellow slaves and pieces together a daring plan of escape across hundreds of miles to freedom. The odds of success are razor-thin for those who make it off the plantation while the risks, dangers and obstacles multiply each step of the way.

 

The life-and-death struggle for freedom demands great sacrifices, as the fugitives must leave family behind who ‘pay’ for their bold escape. Journeying on foot across broad, rugged woodlands, swamps, and rivers, they are aided by an abolitionist couple, new to running a ‘station’ on the Underground Railroad and unprepared for the havoc it will wreak on their personal lives. But reaching an outpost doesn’t ensure safety, as the escapees are endlessly pursued by ruthless mercenaries and other bounty hunters hell-bent on bringing them back, dead or alive.

 

But reaching an outpost doesn’t ensure safety, as the escapees are endlessly pursued by ruthless mercenaries and other bounty hunters hell-bent on bringing them back, dead or alive.

 

Cast: Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Rosalee
Aldis Hodge as Noah
Jessica de Gouw as Elizabeth Hawkes
Alano Miller as Cato
Christopher Meloni as August Pullman
Marc Blucas as John Hawkes
Reed Diamond as Tom Macon
Adina Porter as Pearly Mae
Amirah Vann as Ernestine
Mykelti Williamson as Moses
Theodus Crane as Zeke
Johnny Ray Gill as Sam
Chris Chalk as William Still
Renwick Scott as Henry
Jussie Smollett as Josey

 

Premise:

The story follows a courageous blacksmith Noah (Aldis Hodge) who covertly organizes a small group of his fellow slaves and pieces together a daring plan of escape across hundreds of miles to freedom. The odds of success are razor-thin for those who make it off the plantation while the risks, dangers and obstacles multiply each step of the way.

 

“Underground” is created by Misha Green (“Sons Of Anarchy,” “Heroes”) and Joe Pokaski (“Daredevil,” “Heroes,”) who executive produce alongside Academy Award-winner Akiva Goldsman (“A Beautiful Mind,” “I Am Legend”) of Weed Road Pictures; and Joby Harold (“King Arthur,” “Edge of Tomorrow”) and Tory Tunnell (“King Arthur,” “Holy Rollers”) of Safehouse Pictures. Visionary artist and producer John Legend, an Academy Award, Golden Globe® and multi-Grammy Award winner, and his Get Lifted partners Mike Jackson and Ty Stiklorius executive produce. Additionally, Get Lifted oversees all elements of the show’s music. Anthony Hemingway (“The Wire,” “Treme”) directs and serves as executive producer for the first four episodes.

 

Today, WGN America announced today a first-time collaboration with The Blackhouse Foundation, an Institute Associate of the Sundance Film Festival, to present “The Making of WGN America’s ‘Underground,’” on Saturday, January 23 at 7:00 p.m. in Park City, Utah.

 

Scheduled to take place at Blackhouse’s Sundance headquarters located at the Buona Vita Restaurant, 804 Main Street, Park City, the exclusive “clips and conversation” panel event will feature “Underground” executive producer John Legend, along with the cast and creative team from the hotly anticipated escape thriller set to premiere Wednesday, March 9 (10:00 p.m. ET/PT) on WGN America. Following the panel, WGN America and John Legend will host an “Underground” party, featuring the series’ stars and producers, at David Beavis Gallery, 314 Main St., Park City.

 

An exploration of the journey and revolutionaries of the Underground Railroad, the series’ cast, and creators will delve into the inspiration and strategy behind the development and production of the cable network’s latest original.

 

Featured on “The Making of WGN America’s Underground” panel are: executive producer John Legend, creators and executive producers Misha Green and Joe Pokaski, executive producers Akiva Goldsman, Tory Tunnell and Mike Jackson and executive producer and director of the first four episodes, Anthony Hemingway.

 

Joining the executive producers are stars Jurnee Smollett-Bell (“True Blood,” “Friday Night Lights”), Aldis Hodge (“Straight Outta Compton”), Jessica de Gouw (“Arrow,” “Dracula”), and Alano Miller (“Jane The Virgin”), with Blackhouse Foundation chairman Brickson Diamond serving as moderator.

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