*Bounce TV will launch the new original series “In The Cut” in a special six-week summer series run Tuesday nights starting TONIGHT, August 25. The show stars Dorien Wilson (“The Parkers”), Ken Lawson (“The Parkers”) and also features Jackée Harry (“Sister, Sister”) and John Marshall Jones (“The Smart Guy”).
Created by Bentley Kyle Evans (“Family Time”, “Martin”), the show centers on Jay Weaver (Wilson), a barbershop owner trying to bond with the adult son he never knew he had, and find balance with his feisty ex-wife (Harry) who runs a beauty salon that he co-owns.
We chatted with the Bentley and the cast ahead of the series premiere to learn about the inspiration behind the show and how the series will offer something new to viewers.
“I don’t think that my message, when I’m putting together shows and programming, is to necessarily teach people things,” Bentley said. “I think it’s more so for the entertainment purpose, but also tell stories about our culture in the time and space that we’re presently in. Our shows are going to be capsulize. This is an era and we’re trying to capture the era and be as authentic as possible.”
Ri-Karlo Handy, VP of Original Programming for Bounce TV, is hopeful that the entrepreneurial spirit of the show will inspire viewers. “The entrepreneurship that we show, and all these Black business owners, that’s something that we can look to that people can take away from the show,” he said.
“The barber shop is like the community place where you can air all your dirty laundry,” Bentley said. “Where the fellas get together to fellowship. It’s just that common place that we all go to that, I always say, has got to be captured somehow.”
Not only was Bentley’s chop sessions with the fellas at his local barbershop a catalyst for the show, he also explained how the series was inspired by a relative who discovered he had a son much later in life.
“The story came from a cousin of mine that called me up in recent years and told me that he had a son that I should meet, and I said ‘Oh, man, you still having kids?’ And he said, ‘Naw, man, he’s 30 years old.’ He and the son got together and they are friends now. I had never seen that kind of scenario played out on network TV so I figured if you put those two elements together it would be a good workplace comedy.”
Series stars Dorien Wilson and Jackée Harry explained how their long-time friendship aids in their onscreen chemistry.
“Our chemistry comes from life. Dorian and I, we’ve gone full circle,” Jackée explained. “We’re best of friends and we get along every time we see each other. It’s not fake, and that’s what they call chemistry. That it factor. You can’t quite say what it is, but you like somebody or you don’t.
“I adore this lady. When I knew she was doing the role opposite of me, it was a sense of relief because this lady has timing like nobody’s business,” Dorien said.
The show focuses on the harmonious relationship between a father and son, a bond not often seen in Black TV or within the Black community. Ken Lawson, who plays Dorien’s son, explained how his personal experience helps him relate to his character.
“I have a couple of friends that have issues with their father’s, and I met my oldest brother when I was 17-years-old, so just having that distance and that awkwardness – to be able to relate that to the character opposite Dorien is something that a lot people just have to see. It’s good for the community to see that because you have to take those risks to try to mend those bridges.”
“There’s so many of us in our community where this is a real life situation, where they don’t know their father,” Dorien said. “To be able to come back and have a second chance at it, it’s going to open up a lot of emotions in the people that watch.”
“In The Cut” premieres tonight, August 25 at 9/8c on Bounce TV.