I’ve learned that Yaya DaCosta, coming off playing pop icon Whitney Houston in the Lifetime biopic, is set to star in Chicago Med, the proposed ensemble medical drama spinoff from NBC’s Chicago Fire. DaCosta and the other cast members of the potential spinoff will be introduced in Episode 19 of Chicago Fire this season.
DaCosta will play Maggie Seaver (formerly Emily Sexton), an attractive nurse who begins to date Chicago Fire‘s Kelly (Taylor Kinney), with whom she has a history dating back to high school. Like with Chicago PD, which also started as a planted spinoff from Chicago Fire, the Chicago Med episode is conceived/written by Chicago Fire creators/executive producers Derek Haas and Michael Brandt, executive producer Matt Olmstead and executive producer Dick Wolf, whose company Wolf Films produces the Chicago Fire/Chicago PD franchise for Universal TV. “There will be an event that brings Chicago Med within Chicago Fire,” NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt said at TCA last month.
DaCosta, who had been sought for pilots after following her breakout role as Whitney Houston, also appeared in Lee Daniels’ The Butler. She is with Gersh.
On the heels of the success of shows with black leads/casts like Fox’s Empire and ABC’s How To Get Away With Murder, there has been a strong interest among the broadcast networks in ethnic talent, with DaCosta likely the first of a number of black actors cast in lead roles this pilot season.