Philadelphia-founded hip-hop group The Roots and their production company, Passyunk Productions, will develop two children’s series with Amazon.
As Deadline reports, the Roots’ Tarik Trotter (Black Thought) and Ahmir Thompson (Questlove) will produce the series alongside manager Shawn Gee and Category 5 Entertainment’s Brian Sher. One show will be a live action series, and the other will be animated.
The animated series, tentatively dubbed South Street Sounds, will revolve around a group of friends who grow up in a musical neighborhood where “having a bad day means literally singing the blues,” Deadline writes. The friends, Nick, Zora, and Tyson, form a band, South Street, and set out to play whatever gigs they can find.
The show has a semi-autobiographical bent: When the Roots began, they were known for setting up shop on the South Street sidewalks. "We'd go down after school [at nearby Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts] or on Saturday and perform until we'd made enough to buy a Wawa hoagie and soda," Questlove told the Daily News about his time playing on South Street.
Written by Becky Friedman (Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood), the show will reportedly feature music from the Roots. Details about the live-action series have not yet been revealed.
“As we venture into the world that is film and television production, we couldn’t think of a better partner than Amazon to help us develop these first two children’s projects,” Questlove told Deadline of the shows.
Release dates for the two shows have not yet been announced.