Charles Parnell (The Last Ship) and Saidah Arrika Ekulona (Kevin Can Wait) are set as series regulars in Our People, Fox’s culture-clash single-camera comedy pilot from Lee Daniels and Modern Family executive producer Vali Chandrasekaran.
The project from Lee Daniels Entertainment, Endemol Shine and 20th Century Fox TV is based on the Israeli format Nevsu: A Young Multicultural Couple.
Written by Chandrasekaran and directed by Trent O’Donnell, Our People revolves around Abel, a man from a bombastic African family that doesn’t have a word in their native language for “privacy,” and his fiancée Jenny (Behrs), from a Midwestern family, as they try to build a normal life together — though nobody can agree what that “normal” means.
Parnell will play Zohar, Abel’s always-enthusiastic father. A bit of a hardliner for Ethiopian traditions, he comes from a family of farmers and is also father to Aisha and husband to Gigi. Ekulona as Abel’s mom Gigi. A woman who takes pride in her heritage, she and Zohar are struggling with the fact that Abel is leaving the the house against tradition.
Parnell most recently seen in the series regular role of CMC Jeter on The Last Ship and will next appear in Sam Taylor-Johnson’s feature A Million Little Pieces opposite Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Charlie Hunnam, and Giovanni Ribisi.
Ekulona will next be seen in the feature Behold My Heart opposite Marisa Tomei. She previously has recurred on several series including CBS’s Kevin Can Wait and Bull.
Parnell and Ekulona are both repped by Greene & Associates Talent Agency.