An award-winning drama series is, unfortunately, coming to a close and we’ve got ALL the details on what to expect before we bid it adieu.
As previously reported, OWN’s “Queen Sugar” returns this fall for its seventh and final season boasting a directorial line-up of returning all-star directors, including creator and executive producer Ava DuVernay who will direct the final episode in a full-circle moment.
Season 7 will include the recurring cast; Rutina Wesley (Nova), Kofi Siriboe (Ralph Angel), Tina Lifford (Violet Bordelon), Omar J. Dorsey (Hollywood Desonier), Nicholas Ashe (Micah), Bianca Lawson (Darla) and Henry G. Sanders (Prosper Denton).
Not only that but guest stars returning for Season 7 include Emmy award-winner Glynn Turman, the late father of the Bordelon siblings; Emmy nominees Tracie Thoms, as Nova’s long-lost high school love, and Sharon Lawrence as Charley Bordelon’s mother Lorna; Emmy award-winner Greg Vaughan as Nova’s former partner; Vanessa Bell Calloway (“This Is Us,” “Shameless”), Amirah Vann as family nemesis Parker Campbell; and Brian Michael as Ralph Angel’s high school friend and current police officer Toine.
Exclusive: Omar Dorsey Discusses “Queen Sugar” Season 7
During the 2022 National Association of Black Journalists conference, “Queen Sugar” star Omar J. Dorsey gave members of the press exclusive details on the show’s forthcoming finale.
According to Dorsey whose portrayal of Hollywood has encapsulated fans since season one, this season will focus on forgiveness within the Bordelon family, something Hollywood is well versed in.
Hollywood, the husband of Violet “Aunt Vi” Bordelon, was forgiven after Vi discovered that he was still legally married to his ex-wife so she could remain insured and receive her bipolar medication. Moreover in season 6, Hollywood and the rest of the family had to work to forgive Ralph Angel after he put them all at risk by stealing from the Landry’s warehouse—but not before Hollywood set him straight for his foolish actions.
Apparently, forgiveness will be a recurring theme this season for the sugarcane farming family.
“It’s a family,” said Omar Dorsey at NABJ. “You don’t want to hold onto things for that long but after a while, there has to be a conversation. Those things have to happen to make you whole again.”
Dorsey also added that this season will once again be impacted by the influence of having all-female directors. Since the show’s 2016 inception, creator and executive producer Ava DuVernay made a commitment to exclusively hire women as directors and she’s maintained that promise through the entire series run. Over the course of its seven seasons, “Queen Sugar” has employed 42 women to direct episodes of the show and 39 of those were first-time scripted television directors in the United States.
According to Dorsey, the ladies behind the scenes directly impact the actors’ portrayals, his in particular.
“The sensitivity level that they have–it’s not this over the top machismo [portrayal]” said Dorsey during the NABJ conference. “I credit that to the female directors that I’ve worked with, it’s a blessing. We call it the Ava Effect,” he added.”[And now] I’ve worked with way more female directors than male directors than I ever have in my life which is ‘wow’ to me. Other shows that I work on, at least half of the directors are female. That’s what the Ava Effect really is.”
Still, despite the undeniable Ava Effect that the series possesses and spreads throughout Hollywood, Dorsey admitted that he’s still shocked that Queen Sugar’s teeming with trophies. After years of gut-wrenching scenes and memorable moments, the OWN show has yet to receive a single EMMY, SAG, or Golden Globe nomination. Mind you, the series has won Image Awards, AAFCAs, and a People’s Choice trophy–but Dorsey told journalists that he finds certain award show snubs baffling.
We’re inclined to agree.
“I give up, I’m a member of the Academy, right?” said a candid Dorsey. “I think they’re so used to watching these shows and hearing the buzz word shows that they jump on it—and I was extremely shocked.”
He also recalled that “This Is Us” and “Queen Sugar” were both lauded as top contenders for EMMY noms back in 2016 but the OWN series was unceremoniously snubbed.
“This Is Us” got all the nominations and we got NONE,” added Dorsey. “I was dumbfounded, I said—‘What are we supposed to do?’ I [just] think there wasn’t enough buzz in the Academy,” he concluded.
Despite the disappointment in the awards circuit, Ava Duvernay’s show has won the hearts of watchers who’ll not only see the returning cast and the guests, but they’ll feel the presence of a pivotal character.
Exclusive: Henry G. Sanders Dishes On Ernest Bordelon’s Impact
“Queen Sugar” star Henry G. Sanders was on hand with Omar J. Dorsey during the NABJ Conference and he dished to journalists about someone who has remained a staple in the series despite his departure in episode one.
“Queen Sugar” family patriarch Ernest Bordelon (Glynn Turman) was featured only briefly on the show but it’s his passing that’s been driving the episodes. After dying unexpectedly and leaving behind his 800-acre sugarcane farm to his three children; Charley, Nova, and Ralph Angel, Ernest’s previous actions, will, and legacy have directly impacted the Bordelon family.
According to Sanders who portrays Ernest’s lifelong friend and fellow farmer, Prosper Denton, Prosper plays a part in making sure the Bordelons honor Ernest’s wishes and preserve their birthright.
“Prosper reminds them of what their father wanted from them, what their father expected of them, so he brings that history to the present,” said Sanders during the NABJ Conference.
Sanders also noted that Ernest’s presence will continue to be felt even up until the series finale.
“They talk about Ernest and the land, I think that’s what Ava was trying to do; keep Ernest present in this family,” he added. “Everybody knew that Ernest Bordelon was there and these are his kids. It’s a nice arc to have from season one to the final episode in season 7.”
“Queen Sugar” returns to OWN this fall for its seventh and final season on September 6.
Will YOU be watching???