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TCA 2018: Netflix to Develop Madam C.J. Walker Series

Complete Coverage: 2018 TCA Summer Press Tour

Beverly Hills, Calif. — Netflix has greenlit a new series revolving around black hair care pioneer Madam C.J. Walker, the streaming service announced Sunday during its Television Critics Association summer press tour presentation.

The series, starring and executive produced by Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer and co-produced by LeBron James' SpringHill Entertainment, will showcase how Walker overcame hostile turn-of-the-century America, epic rivalries, tumultuous marriages and some trifling family to become America’s first black, self-made female millionaire, according to the service.

Netflix also announced a Sept. 21 premiere date for its new drama series Maniac — created and executive produced by Patrick Somerville — which follows two strangers drawn to the late stages of a mysterious pharmaceutical trial, as well as an Oct. 26 date for the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, which imagines the origin and adventures of Sabrina the Teenage Witch as a dark coming-of-age story that traffics in horror, the occult and, of course, witchcraft.

Related: Netflix Options Rights to Phil Knight’s ‘Shoe Dog’

Another series in development is White Lines, a drama in which a woman returns to a Spanish island to investigate the death of her brother and finds a world of dance music, super yachts, lies and cover-ups, forcing her to confront the darker sides of her own character in a place where people live life on the edge, said company officials.

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.