‘Black-ish’ to end after upcoming eighth season

The popular ABC sitcom created by Kenya Barris announced that its next season would be the last

Black-ish creator Kenya Barris announced on Friday that the series has been renewed for its eighth and final season. 

Read More: Controversial ‘Black-ish’ episode to air on Hulu

“To ALL the people in the world I love, honor, respect and care for it is both exciting and bittersweet to share that black-ish been RENEWED by ABC for it’s EIGHTH… and FINAL SEASON,” Barris wrote in part on Instagram. “In this day and age it is rare to get to decide when your show should come to an end, and we are grateful along with ABC to be able to make this final season exactly what we’d hoped for – and to do it with the entire and AMAZINGLY STELLAR cast coming back to close this chapter out with us the right way!”

The series, starring Anthony Anderson as Andre “Dre” Johnson and Tracee Ellis Ross as Rainbow Johnson, a character inspired by Barris’ wife of 20 years, Dr. Rania “Rainbow” Barris, debuted on ABC in 2014.

“Black-ish” cast (ABC)

Ross also shared the sad news about the show coming to an end in an IG post, writing: “Hard to imagine that it’s been 7 yrs of @blackishabc & this will be our 8th & final season. The joy & pride in what we made is immeasurable. Thx 4 laughing, crying & growing with the Johnsons! To the #blackish family: my love 4 you runs deep! Stay tuned y’all. It’s gonna be good!”

Barris left ABC in 2018 over creative clashes with the network. ABC’s decision to ban an episode of Black-ish that centered around the NFL and police brutality was said to have been at the root of his exit, theGrio reported.

“I’m very grateful to Patrick Moran and his team at ABC Studios, who have supported me every step of the way as I created the worlds of Black-ish, Grown-ish and now Besties. It has been an incredible ride including a Peabody and Golden Globe win, Emmy nominations, and many other accolades,” Barris said in a statement at the time.

But most importantly, they’ve allowed me to realize my dream of creating my own shows and I’m so proud of the work we’ve done together. No matter what, the studio has never wavered in their support of my creative vision.”

Following his announcement, then ABC president Channing Dungey noted that Barris would continue to maintain a connection to the network.

REVOLT X AT&T Host REVOLT 3-Day Summit In Los Angeles - Day 3
Kenya Barris speaks onstage at the REVOLT X AT

“First of all, Kenya’s broader relationship with the Disney-ABC Television Group goes on, because he still is very involved in Black-ish, he has Grown-ish, he has a new show, Besties,” Dungey told Variety.

She also addressed the controversial NFL episode which was titled “Please, Baby, Please,” and touched athletes kneeling during the national anthem in protest of police brutality.

“With this particular episode, there were a number of different elements to the episode that we had a hard time coming to terms on,” Dungey told The Hollywood Reporter in May 2018. “Much has been made about the kneeling part of it, which was not even really the issue, but I don’t want to get into that. At the end of the day, this was a mutual decision between Kenya and the network to not put the episode out.”

50th NAACP Image Awards - Press Room
(L-R) Brian Dobbins, Yara Shahidi, Marcus Scribner, Jeff Meacham, Miles Brown, Jonathan Groff, Deon Cole, Tracee Ellis Ross, and Peter Mackenzie, winners of the Outstanding Comedy Series for ‘Black-ish,’ attend the 50th NAACP Image Awards March 30, 2019. (Photo by Liliane Lathan/Getty Images for NAACP)

Barris told Variety at the time, “Given our creative differences, neither ABC nor I were happy with the direction of the episode and mutually agreed not to air it.”

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

In August 2018, it was announced that Barris had signed a three-year overall deal with Netflix to produce series exclusively for the streaming giant. The deal was reportedly valued at roughly $100M.

theGrio’s Courtney Wills and Jay Scott Smith contributed to this report.

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