EXCLUSIVE: Disney Channel has given a series order to Saturdays, a coming-of-age roller-skating comedy from Black-ish star Marsai Martin and her Genius Entertainment and writer-executive producer Norman Vance Jr. (Roll Bounce, Girlfriends). Production is slated to begin in May for premiere on Disney Channel.
Written by Vance, the single-camera comedy was ordered to pilot at Disney Channel in March. It centers on Paris Johnson, played by Danielle Jalade (Yes Day), who considers roller skating to be part of her soul – she breathes it in and makes it a lifestyle. She lives for the weekends because that’s when she gets to go to her sanctuary, the neon-lit Saturdays, a seemingly magical wood floor roller-rink where the impossible often manifests. In this wondrous place, Paris can hang with her best friends (the We-B-Girlz skate crew), choreograph exhilarating routines on wheels, banter with her rivals, navigate life with her DJ brother London and work on becoming a Golden – a member of Saturday’s skating elite, chosen by the mystical owner of the rink, The Duchess.
Also starring are Omar Gooding (Family Time) as Cal Johnson, Golden Brooks (Girlfriends) as Deb Johnson, Jermaine Harris (The Map of Tiny Perfect Things) as London Johnson and Daria Johns (Nappily Ever After) as Simone.
Vance and Martin executive produce with Nicole Dow and Joshua and Carol Martin (Little).
Charles Stone III (Drumline, black-ish) directed the pilot.
“We’re thrilled to be in business with Marsai, Norman, Nicole, Joshua, and Carol in bringing this adventure to our viewers, said Ayo Davis, president of Disney Branded Television. “We know that audiences will fall in love with Paris, her friends and her family as they share in the love, laughter and music in this fun-filled world of roller skating.”
A winner of multiple NAACP Image Awards and BET Awards for her roles on ABC’s Black-ish and the 2019 feature film Little, Martin became the youngest person ever to executive-produce a major studio feature film with Little. She founded Genius Productions, a Los Angeles-based production company, with Joshua and Carol Martin, to create compelling stories for television, features, and digital. Genius Productions is repped by UTA, Oronde Garrett of M88, and Stephen Barnes of Barnes Morris Klein & Yorn
Veteran TV and film writer Vance’s credits include Moesha and Girlfriends. He wrote and produced several films including Roll Bounce, Beauty Shop and Pride. He most recently served as Co-Executive Producer on Our Kind Of People and as a Supervising Producer on the series American Soul, Swagger and Queen Sugar. Vance is repped by The Gersh Agency, Heroes and Villains Entertainment and Will Jacobson of Goodman, Genow, Schenkman.