WEEK IN WOMEN: Janine Sherman Barrois’ THE BIG CIGAR set for Apple TV+ – Brandy McDonnell reports

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Janine Sherman Barrois’ The Big Cigar, the highly anticipated limited drama series that chronicles the story of Black Panther leader Huey P. Newton’s escape to Cuba, is coming soon to Apple TV+. Based on the monumental magazine article of the same name, The Big Cigar makes its global debut on May 17 with the first two episodes, followed by new episodes every Friday through June 14.

Oscar-nominated actor, producer and director Don Cheadle serves as director and executive producer on the first two episodes.

Joshuah Bearman (Argo), who wrote the magazine article that inspired the series, will also serve as executive producer.

The Big Cigar tells the true story of a Hollywood revolution meeting a social revolution: It’s a wild caper of the Black Panther founder escaping from the FBI to Cuba with the assistance of famed producer Bert Schneider in an impossibly elaborate plan — involving a fake movie production — that goes wrong every way it possibly can. And somehow, it’s all true. Mostly.

André Holland leads a renowned ensemble cast including Alessandro Nivola, Tiffany Boone, P. J. Byrne, Marc Menchaca, Moses Ingram, Rebecca Dalton, Olli Haaskivi, Jordane Christie and Glynn Turman.

The Big Cigar‘s showrunner is NAACP Image Award winner Janine Sherman Barrois (Claws, The Kings of Napa) and Jim Hecht (Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty) penned the show’s first episode.

The series hails from Warner Bros. Television, where Barrois and her Folding Chair Productions are under an overall deal. Continue reading on THE WEEK IN WOMEN

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Brandy McDonnell

Brandy McDonnell writes features and reviews movies, music, events and the arts for The Oklahoman, Oklahoma's statewide newspaper, and NewsOK.com, the state's largest news Web site. Raised on a farm near Lindsay, Okla., she started her journalism career in seventh grade, when she was elected reporter for her school's 4-H Club. Taking her duties seriously, she began submitting stories to The Lindsay News, and worked for the local weekly through high school. She attended Oklahoma State University, where she worked for The Daily O'Collegian and earned her journalism degree with honors. She worked for three years at small Oklahoma dailies The Edmond Sun and Shawnee News-Star. In 2002, she joined The Oklahoman as a features reporter, writing about movies, the arts, events, families and nonprofits. She moved to The Oklahoman's entertainment desk in 2007. In 2004, she won a prestigious Journalism Fellowship in Child & Family Policy from the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Along with her membership in AWFJ, she also is a founding member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle. Brandy writes The Week In Women blog for AWFJ.org.