Anthony Sparks Named Showrunner and Executive Producer of New Season
Season Three Finale on Wednesday, August 22 Expands to 90 Minutes
Los Angeles – OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network announced today it has renewed for a fourth season Ava DuVernay’s critically acclaimed original drama series “Queen Sugar,” from Warner Horizon Scripted Television, ahead of the extended 90-minute season three finale airing Wednesday, August 22 (10-11:30 p.m. ET/PT).
In addition, “Queen Sugar” co-executive producer Anthony Sparks will take the reigns as showrunner/executive producer for season four, continuing DuVernay’s intention of providing showrunner opportunities to those who have never before held the position.
“Under Ava’s creative vision and leadership, ‘Queen Sugar’ continues to earn a well-deserved reputation for depicting nuanced characters, rich storylines and establishing an inclusive team that inspires and ignites much needed conversations about our society today,” said Erik Logan, president, OWN. “We are very proud of this show, the incredible cast, producers and crew, and can’t wait for more of the Bordelon family in season four.”
In the series’ expanded 90-minute season three finale on Wednesday, August 22 (10-11:30 p.m. ET/PT), Ralph Angel (Kofi Siriboe) receives some unexpected news, the fate of the correctional facility is revealed, and Charley (Dawn-Lyen Gardner) makes a proposal on behalf of the farmers. Plus, Violet (Tina Lifford) and Hollywood (Omar J. Dorsey) celebrate their love. The series also stars Nicholas Ashe, Dondré T. Whitfield, Bianca Lawson and Henry G. Sanders. Timon Kyle Durrett guest stars.
“Queen Sugar” was named Television Show of the Year from both American Black Film Festival (ABFF Honors) and African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) for the second consecutive year and was nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Best Drama Series. Chronicling the lives and loves of the Bordelon siblings in Louisiana, the series premiered its third season May 29 delivering over two million viewers and on average ranks #1 in its time period across all cable in the network’s key women 25-54 demo (L+3). It is also Wednesday night’s #1 original series across all of broadcast and cable for African-American women and total viewers and is consistently one of the most talked-about shows on social media.
Following a creative initiative established at the series’ outset, DuVernay assembled an all-female directing team that will continue in the new season.
“Queen Sugar” season three is produced for OWN by Warner Horizon Scripted Television. The executive producers are Ava DuVernay, Oprah Winfrey, Kat Candler and Paul Garnes. Kat Candler is showrunner. The series is based on the book by Natalie Baszile.
About Anthony Sparks
Fostering a space of inclusion, Anthony Sparks has been a key component in the “Queen Sugar” writers’ room from the series inception. Sparks television writing credits include “Undercovers,” “Lincoln Heights,” “The District,” “The Blacklist,” and he has been nominated for two NAACP Image Awards along with receiving two writing awards from the Norman Lear Center. Previously, Sparks was a former cast member of Broadway hit ‘Stomp.’ He holds three degrees from USC (BFA, MA, and Ph.D.), where he studied Theatre, Film, Anthropology, and American History. While at USC he received the Jack Nicholson Award and the Anna Bing Arnold Doctoral Fellowship. One of his plays, “Ghetto Punch,” has been performed at several venues across the country.
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About Warner Horizon Scripted Television
A division of the Warner Bros. Television Group, Warner Horizon Scripted Television was founded in 2006 and is one of the entertainment industry’s leading producers of dramatic and comedic programming for the cable and subscription/on-demand marketplace. Series produced by Warner Horizon Scripted Television include Animal Kingdom and Claws for TNT; American Woman for Paramount Network; David Makes Man, Love Is___ and Queen Sugar for OWN; Fuller House for Netflix; Krypton for SYFY; Pennyworth for EPIX; Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists for Freeform; and You for Lifetime.
About OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network
OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network is the first and only network named for, and inspired by, a single iconic leader. Oprah Winfrey’s heart and creative instincts inform the brand and the magnetism of the channel. OWN is a leading destination for premium scripted and unscripted programming from today’s most innovative storytellers. OWN’s original scripted series include popular dramas “Queen Sugar,” “Greenleaf,” “Love Is __,” “The Have and Have Nots, “If Loving You is Wrong,” hit sitcom “The Paynes,” and upcoming drama series “David Makes Man” from Academy Award-winner Tarell Alvin McCraney and “Ambitions” from box office hit-maker Will Packer. OWN’s Saturday night unscripted programming lineup includes “Iyanla: Fix My Life,” “Book of John Gray,” “Black Love,” “Mind Your Business with Mahisha” and the recently announced dating series “Ready to Love.” OWN connects with its audience wherever they are, inspiring conversation among a global community of like-minded viewers on social media and beyond. Launched on January 1, 2011, OWN is a joint venture between Harpo, Inc. and Discovery Communications. The venture also includes the award-winning digital platform Oprah.com. Access OWN anytime, anywhere on WatchOWN.tv or across mobile devices and connected TVs. For more information, please visit www.oprah.com/own and https://press.discovery.com/us/own/.