Press release - Onyx Collective

May 16, 2023

Onyx Collective and Channel 4 Announce Straight-to-Series Pickup of ‘Queenie,’ From Further South Productions in Association With Lionsgate TV

Based on the Best-Selling Novel by Candice Carty-Williams, the Drama Series Will Star Dionne Brown, Samuel Adewunmi and Bellah


‘Queenie’ Will Be Available on Channel 4 in the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland and Will Stream Exclusively on Hulu in the U.S., Star+ in Latin America, and Disney+ in All Other Territories

  • Onyx Collective and Channel 4 have announced the straight-to-series pickup of the drama “Queenie” from Further South Productions in association with Lionsgate TV.
  • “Queenie” will be available on Channel 4 in the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland and will stream exclusively on Hulu in the U.S., Star+ in Latin America, and Disney+ in all other territories.
  • The eight-episode series stars Dionne Brown as Queenie, Samuel Adewunmi as Frank, and Bellah as Kyazike.
  • Logline: Queenie Jenkins is a 25-year-old Jamaican British woman living in south London, straddling two cultures and slotting neatly into neither. After a messy breakup with her long-term boyfriend, Queenie seeks comfort in all the wrong places and begins to realize she has to face the past head-on before she can rebuild. The series is based on the best-selling novel by Candice Carty-Williams.
  • Created by Candice Carty-Williams, “Queenie” is executive produced by Carty-Williams, who will also serve as showrunner. Non-writing executive producers are Further South’s Steve November and Sarah Conroy, with Lisa Walters as co-executive producer and series producer.
  • Cast:
    • Dionne Brown as Queenie: The 25-year-old, curvy, pretty south Londoner speaks her mind, especially when she shouldn’t. Queenie is from a Jamaican family, striving to achieve in a predominantly white workplace. She is constantly playing catch up with her emotions and the situations she finds herself in due to a hard-wired habit of self-sabotaging, which she is mostly unaware of. As soon as she stops to reflect, everything she’s been running from hits her, and it is the worst emotional pileup imaginable. Our protagonist is thus hellbent on outrunning her demons and disassociating — a strategy destined to implode.
      • Bio: Dionne Brown is a 2021 Arts Educational School graduate. She will next be seen as series regular DC Chloe Summers in “Criminal Record,” alongside Cush Jumbo and Peter Capaldi for Apple TV. Prior to this, she featured in “The Walk-In” for ITV, directed by Paul Andrew Williams. Brown’s credits while training include “In These Four Walls,” “Dance Nation,” “Romeo & Juliet” and “Love & Information.” She is also a graduate of Open Door and National Youth Theatre.
      • Credits: “Criminal Record,” “The Walk-In”
      • Representation: Christina Shepherd and Luke Reilly at The Artists Partnership.
      • Headshot and Photo Credit: Michael Shelford
    • Samuel Adewunmi as Frank: Twenty-eight-year-old Frank is Kyazike’s older cousin, a man with his own van and grand plans in life. He is from Ends, is invested in his community and has known Queenie since her high school days. He has seen her on occasion with Kyazike over the years, although not since she hooked up with Tom. Frank is emotionally intelligent, well-read, and articulate — an intellectual match for Queenie. He thinks and speaks from the heart and challenges Queenie. He’s her Truth Teller, straightforward and unapologetic but with a good heart.
      • Bio: Samuel is a BAFTA nominee for his leading performance in the BBC crime drama series “You Don’t Know Me.” In 2023, he will be seen in a series regular role in Marvel Studios’ “Secret Invasion” on Disney+ alongside Olivia Colman, Samuel L. Jackson and Ben Mendelsohn. He was also lauded for his performance in “The Last Tree,” which premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.
      • Credits: “Secret Invasion” (Marvel Studios), “You Don’t Know Me” (BBC)
      • Representation: Kate Buckley at 42; Brandt Joel and Elan Ruspoli at WME.
      • Headshot and Photo Credit: Joel Smedley
    • Bellah as Kyazike: Queenie’s longest-serving best friend from school, Kyazike is of Ugandan heritage, was raised in south London and is also 25 years old. She works in a bank where she can cross-reference eligible men with their bank balances. She always has the longest hair, the best nails, the highest designer heels, and the funniest stories. Kyazike is firmly on her quest for Mr. Right, who must have financial clout. While Queenie doesn’t find her friend’s quest aspirational, she definitely finds it inspirational.
      • Bio: Bellah is a singer-songwriter from north London. She has officially been recognized as a “one to watch” by the likes of British Vogue, BBC Radio 1Xtra and Capital Xtra, among other platforms. She has graced worldwide stages performing at 2021’s MOBO Awards ceremony and garnering a nomination for Best R&B/Soul Act. Her single “Evil Eye” debuted on the renowned COLORS platform, the video of which has been viewed by over 1 million people worldwide. This comes alongside a collective 20 million+ streams across platforms and Spotify plays in over 170 countries. Bellah has recently returned from the U.S., touring her latest EP “Adultsville.”
      • Representation: Anna Tune at Independent and Sonitus Management.
      • Headshot and Photo Credit: Lake Sanu

About Onyx Collective
Onyx Collective is a premium content brand with programming exclusively available to stream on Hulu in the U.S., Star+ in Latin America and Disney+ in all other territories. Onyx Collective was designed to curate thought-provoking entertainment content by creators of color and offers an exciting slate for a global audience, including: Oscar®-winning documentary “Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised),” “The Hair Tales,” “Reasonable Doubt,” “Aftershock,” “The 1619 Project,” “Bruiser,” “UnPrisoned,” “Anthem,” “Drive with Swizz Beatz,” “Searching For Soul Food,” “How to Die Alone,” “Black Twitter” (working title) and “Untitled Sly Stone” (working title).

The brand’s roster of prolific creators also includes Ryan Coogler’s Proximity Media (“Judas and the Black Messiah,” “Black Panther”), writer and director Destin Daniel Cretton (“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”) and his production company Family Owned, writer, producer and director Prentice Penny’s Penny for Your Thoughts, writer and comedian Natasha Rothwell (“Insecure,” “SNL”), writer-producer Erika Green Swafford and her production company Chocolate Girl Wonder, Yara Shahidi with her 7th Sun Production Company, and most recently writer-producer Jason Kim (“Barry,” “KPOP”) and Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Joseph Patel (“Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)”).

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About Channel 4
Channel 4 exists to create change through entertainment. Publicly owned yet commercially funded, Channel 4 generates significant and sustainable cultural, economic and social impact across the UK – at no cost to the taxpayer. The broadcaster’s distinctive remit is set by Parliament, and it has a role to represent unheard voices, challenge with purpose and reinvent entertainment. For 40 years, it has been a British success story, engaging generation after generation of young people. Through a unique publisher-broadcaster model, Channel 4 commissions its content from the UK independent production sector. Working with around 300 creative companies every year, Channel 4 makes a major contribution to the local, regional and national economy, creating and supporting thousands of jobs and businesses across the country.

In 2020, Channel 4 launched its Future4 strategy to become a digital-first public service media company and to continue to deliver significant impact for UK audiences and investment into the UK creative economy. Across its bases in London, Leeds, Manchester, Bristol and Glasgow, Channel 4 is turbocharging its efforts to find, nurture and develop talent across the UK. Through its training and development initiative 4Skills, Channel 4 is opening up opportunities in broadcasting, with a particular focus on disadvantaged young people, and addressing skills gaps across the Nations and Regions.

Channel 4 has the UK’s biggest free streaming service plus 11 television channels including: Channel 4, E4, E4 Extra, More4, Film4, 4Seven and The Box Plus Network. Through Film4 Productions, Channel 4 also invests in British filmmakers to huge critical acclaim, producing 37 Oscar wins and 88 BAFTA wins in its history.

About Lionsgate
Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B) encompasses world-class motion picture and television studio operations aligned with the STARZ premium global subscription platform to bring a unique and varied portfolio of entertainment to consumers around the world. The Company’s film, television, subscription and location-based entertainment businesses are backed by an 18,000-title library and a valuable collection of iconic film and television franchises. A digital age company driven by its entrepreneurial culture and commitment to innovation, the Lionsgate brand is synonymous with bold, original, relatable entertainment for audiences worldwide.

Onyx Collective Media Relations
Fowzia Iranpur