Blindspotting, a new Starz original series, will make its television premiere on Sunday, June 13, Complex reports. The Bay Area-set half-hour dramedy takes place six months after the events of the 2018 feature film of the same name written and produced by Clipping frontman Daveed Diggs (Undone, TNT’s Snowpiercer) and poet Rafael Casal (Bad Education, The Good Lord Bird), according to Complex. Casal reprises his role from the film as Miles, a temperamental figure with a penchant for causing trouble. Also, reprising her movie role is Diggs’s Emmy Award-winning Hamilton co-star Jasmine Cephas Jones (#FreeRayshawn, Monsters and Men), who plays Ashley, Miles’s long-term girlfriend and the mother of his son Sean, portrayed once more by Ziggy Baitinger. Watch Casal, Jones and Baitinger’s return to the world of Blindspotting in the trailer below:
Whereas the original indie film was centered around the friendship between Casal’s Miles and Diggs’s Collin and touched on themes of systemic racism, gentrification and the lingering psychological effects of incarceration, the Starz series uses its expansive canvas to pose larger questions about the ways in which the event of one person’s imprisonment affects their loved ones: “Miles gets arrested for a drug-related crime, leaving his girlfriend and son… behind to fend for themselves. Ashley and Sean are forced to move in with Miles’s mother, Rainey (Helen Hunt, Mad About You), and his sister, Trish (Jaylen Barron, Free Rein),” via Complex.
Casal spoke with Complex about how he and Diggs felt hesitant about bringing Blindspotting to the small screen until they resolved to place Jones’s character at its center. “We actually had no desire to turn it into a show. We loved it as the indie film that it was and loved the reception that it got… The only way we would ever do this show is if we could follow Ashley into her world and meet a bunch of of other characters that didn’t get to be a part of the Bay Area story that the movie was trying to tell,” he explained, via Complex.
Conveying the multifaceted nature of the Bay Area, specifically Oakland, has always been at the heart of Casal and Diggs’s vision for Blindspotting. During the producers’ press tour for the film in 2018, Diggs discussed why he felt passionate about paying homage to his birthplace in his creative output. “I think a lot of us are aware of how quickly the Oakland we knew is disappearing and want to create some sort of time capsule– something we can look back at in ten years and be like, ‘That was it. That’s where I come from…’ But I think it’s a place that is unlike anywhere else. So there’s a lot of stories that feel different there, and we have’t seen them on the screen yet,” he proclaimed, via NPR.