Anthony Anderson says it’s amazing to not only star in but write for a show like “Black-ish” that toes the line between drama and comedy, while putting a real message out there for young and old fans alike.
“First, I’d like to commend our writers, they are the reason we are able to do that,” he told ABC News on Wednesday. “And have something to say about social commentary, about what’s going on in these communities and in this world.”
In four seasons, the show has tackled race relations between police and people of different ethnic backgrounds, the lasting effects of the recent presidential election and more. For those efforts Anderson, who plays Dre, his co-star Tracee Ellis Ross (Rainbow) and the show itself have received Emmy nods.
In one episode “Lemons,” the show gives fans a look into the mental state and reasoning of someone who not only voted for Barack Obama, but also Donald Trump years later. There’s judgment from this person’s co-workers, who don’t support the current president, but she’s allowed to speak her mind and have a “fair” platform to explain her pick, Anderson said.
“We deal with universal issues, universal themes, that isn’t just subject to just one group of people,” the 46-year-old added. “The stories that we are telling just happen to be told by an African-American family … a lot of people feel disenfranchised and left behind or not thought of.”
But “Black-ish” has a spin-off coming that should deal with some of the same issues, but on new ground and from a new perspective. “College-ish” will star Yara Shahidi, who plays Anderson’s daughter on the show (Zoey), as she makes her way through life away from home for the first time.
“The writers are just now getting together and putting that show together right now,” he said. “So, we’ll both be in production … coming in the next month or so. It’ll be interesting to see how we cross over into each other’s shows.”
Anderson believes Shahidi can certainly handle her own show.