Thirty years after the world said goodbye, Dynasty has returned to television. The iconic ‘80s soap opera was a cultural phenomenon, and now The CW has reimagined it for the 21st century. Set in Atlanta, and following the rival Carrington and Colby families (this go-round, the Colbys are Black) the new series is giving the legendary soap some pretty insane twists. For relative newcomer, Sam Adegoke, whose credits include Murder in the First and Switched at Birth — taking on Dynasty was about digging into the television archives. “To be perfectly honest, Dynasty was before my time,” Adegoke told me with an amused chuckle. “I had to do my homework. It skipped an entire generation.”
Still, from the series’ legacy alone – one that labels itself as “delicious, ambitious, and vicious,” Adegoke knew that he had to be a part of the reboot. “You want to do work that’s impactful, and that can resonate with as many audiences as the original Dynasty did,“ he explained to me. “I started trying to find clips, which was harder than you’d think, of some of the original Dynasty shows and watching it, getting a taste for what it was. I thought, ‘This could really, really be cool,’ especially since The CW seemed so open to the idea of reprising and reimagining some of these iconic characters with a more inclusive and diverse cast. That was pretty much all I needed to hear. I was really excited about it.”
Despite its impact – the Dynasty of 30 years ago would be pretty problematic if it were to air today. Executive producer Josh Schwartz who is known for The O.C. and Gossip Girl knew that he had to create a show that would reflect how the world looks at this very moment. Making the Colbys a wealthy Black family was just one of the many changes that were made to the series. “As a human being, I think we watch and root for, and are drawn to people who share similar experiences to us,” Adegoke reflected. “ stories we can relate to. I think the more that we can kind of capture that on the screen through characters that portray and encompass a broad spectrum of beliefs, of appearances, ethnicities, morals — you cast a wider net for your audiences. I feel highly privileged to be a part of a show that is a champion of that.”
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