‘Black-ish’ to tackle upcoming election in 1-hour special ahead of season 7 premiere

Matthew A. Cherry is set to direct the 1-hour special that hits ABC on October 4

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It’s almost time for black-ish to return for its seventh season on ABC, but the Johnsons will tackle the upcoming election in a two-part special next week. 

The series, led by Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Marsai Martin, and Jenifer Lewis, will present two back-to-back episodes for the 1-hour special on October 4. The episodes will follow the Johnsons as they navigate the upcoming election and will be presented in part as an animated episode. Oscar-winning Hair Love creator  Matthew A. Cherry is set to direct. 

Read More: ‘Black-ish’ to air its first-ever animated episode

The season 7 premiere will hit ABC on October 21 and the new season of the series, created by Kenya Barris, promises to continue telling stories that shine a light on current events, addressing the global pandemic, voting, systemic racism, and the movement for social justice and equality. 

Check out the teaser: 

As if that’s not enough good news, it was also announced on Tuesday that esteemed and award-winning American author and artist Kadir Nelson will paint the Johnson family portrait, serving as the black-ish season 7 key art ahead of the show’s fall premiere. The artwork will be unveiled at a later date. 

“I’m thrilled and honored to have been asked to create the key art for ‘black-ish’ on ABC,” said Nelson. “I’m a fan of the show, and it’s especially pleasing to have met and worked with the cast and creatives.

black-ish has historically told the story of the Black experience in America through the lens of the Johnson family, tackling topics such as racism, police brutality and mental health, among others with poignant storytelling. Similarly, Nelson, whose work can be found in the permanent collections of notable institutions including the United States House of Representatives, the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery and the National Museum of African American History and Culture, focuses on historical narratives and heroic subjects in American culture. 

Read More: ‘Black-ish’ spinoff ‘Old-ish’ in development with Jenifer Lewis, Laurence Fishburne

“I feel that art’s highest function is that of a mirror that reflects the beauty of the human spirit,” he continued. “I aim to create expressive and emotionally resonant paintings that connect with viewers from all walks of life. I often revisit themes of American history and the journey of the hero. Primarily through two-dimensional oil paintings, I utilize dramatic lighting and perspective, dynamic compositions, robust and subtle palettes, and varied textures to create a visceral visual experience for the viewer.”

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