Mining script

Rasheed Newson is redefining television, one script at a time / Queerty

Storytellers come in many forms. Sometimes they are novelists, sometimes screenwriters, and sometimes they are Rasheed Newson– which becomes both!

Many of the shows you’ve loved have at some point been influenced by Newson’s pen. The Chi, Narcosand Bel-Airthe reinvention of Fresh Prince of Bel-Airare one few of them.

Apart from writing captivating television episodes, he is also busy producing these works. And while Newson has enjoyed plenty of success throughout his career, navigating the entertainment industry as a black queer man is far from easy. Newson just makes it look like that.

After a career in nonprofit communications, the Indiana native left Washington D.C., where he attended Georgetown University, and traveled to the land of television opportunities, Los Angeles, in 2002 hoping to succeed in “La La Terrain”.

Many years have been spent navigating different media jobs, networking and cultivating his craft. And when he chanced upon his writing partner, TJ Brady, at a writer’s studio, his career path changed forever. Shortly after, the two were added to the staff writing team for the Fox drama Lie to me.

From there, Newson and Brady cemented themselves as a writing duo on some of the most popular shows on TV. And Newson’s last attempt, Bel-Airis the culmination of all these years of hard work.

Developed from the fake trailer created by fellow writer and producer Morgan Cooper, Bel-Air tells the story of the new prince through a dramatic lens. By bringing together an all-black cast, adding weird themes (we see you Ashley Banks!), and touching on poignant topics within black families, you can clearly say that Bel-Air is a labor of love. One that Newson is extremely proud of.

I mean, I too would be proud to be a part of most watched series on Peacock.

But why stop at scriptwriting? Newson hasn’t and probably won’t, now that he released his first novel in August. My government wants to kill me is the coming-of-age story of a young, gay, black man experiencing a personal and political awakening in 1980s New York City. No stranger to the power of storytelling, Newson’s next book is sure to leave an impact on all of its readers when it comes out later this summer.

And while Newson spends his hours on set, after long days he leaves Hollywood for some quality time with his husband and two kids in Pasadena. The multi-talented designer rubs shoulders with Hollywood’s elite, balancing family life and making it easy.

Now more than ever, black queer voices and perspectives are needed and Rasheed Newson’s presence in the entertainment industry is a must. Newson gives hope to black queer creatives around the world and with a career that continues to soar, he will inspire other generations of black queer creatives to come.

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