Phylicia Rashad, Dee Harris-Lawrence & The Cast Of ‘David Makes Man’ On Memory & Storytelling
When playwright and poet Tarell Alvin McCraney gave us Moonlight–he showed the magic and nuances of Black men–specifically those struggling with their sexuality, in a way that we’d never seen them before. With his stunning new arthouse coming-of-age series, David Makes Man–starring Phylicia Rashad and a slew of newcomers, McCraney delivers once again.
Based on the events of McCraney’s own life growing up in Miami, the OWN series follows 14-year-old David (newcomer Akili McDowell), a young Black man growing up in the Miami projects. Still haunted by the death of a close friend–David is also grappling with caring for his little brother (Cayden K. Williams) and his relationship with his mother, Gloria (Alana Arenas)–a hard-working woman who is recovering from drug addiction. Each day, David is bused miles away to his affluent magnet school where his teacher Dr. Woods-Trap (Phylicia Rashad) prompts him to expand his mind in new ways.
Breathtakingly stunning and compelling, David Makes Man presents a poetic picture of Black identity, masculinity and what it means to “make man.” Ahead of the series premiere–STYLECASTER sat down to chat with the showrunner, Dee Harris-Lawrence, the legendary Phylicia Rashad, Akili McDowell and Nathaniel Logan McIntyre who plays David’s best friend Seren.
“This project, from day one of meeting Tarell Alvin McCraney, became very much my story,” Harris-Lawrence revealed. “There have been coming of age stories but I don’t think there have been coming of age stories like this where you get into the mind of a young Black boy–and we have such a young Black cast. When I first met with Tarell after I read the script I said, ‘I’m pretty much the female version of David, in terms of growing up in the hood and having to be bused miles away to go to school.’ I used my imagination in a big way, and I was a huge dreamer. I had a teacher named Ms. Brown who got me writing stories. As I started writing more stories, my daydreams began to wane. That’s when I realized, ‘This is what I have to do.'”
Continue reading at STYLECASTER.