Courtney B. Vance-Led ’61st Street’ Picked Up By The CW After AMC Cancellation

EXCLUSIVE: The CW has picked up both seasons of 61st Street, the dramatic thriller starring Courtney B. Vance and Aunjanue Ellis in partnership with AMC Networks, which canceled the series amid the company’s cost-cutting drive in January.

Season 1 will air at its new home this fall followed by its sophomore season in 2024.

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Both seasons were shot simultaneously but only its freshman season aired in its entirety last spring. It was originally ordered as part of a two-season pickup.

“There was a lot of love and hard work that went into making 61st Street,” said Vance. “I’m thrilled that The CW has enthusiastically given all 16 episodes of 61st Street a network home. With The CW, I’m confident that we will engage a universe of viewers who will celebrate the series with us. My cast, crew and I can’t wait!”

This marks the first pickup of a U.S.-made scripted series for the new CW regime which has been adding Canadian, U.K. and Australian shows as part of their programming strategy focused on acquisitions and co-productions. It also fits into the push to broaden the CW’s reach beyond its long-time young adult target.

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61st Street is a gripping, star-studded premium drama led by a powerhouse performance from Courtney B. Vance and featuring an incredibly talented ensemble cast and creatively brilliant team of producers,” commented Brad Schwartz, President of Entertainment, The CW Network. “We are proud The CW is now the broadcast home of 61st Street and cannot wait to introduce this series to a whole new audience.”

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Courtney B. Vance in '61st Street'
Courtney B. Vance in ’61st Street’

From Peter Moffat, J. David Shanks and Outlier Society, 61st Street tells the story of Moses Johnson (Tosin Cole), a promising Black high school athlete who is swept up into the infamously corrupt Chicago criminal justice system. Taken by the police as a supposed gang member, he finds himself in the eye of the storm as cops and prosecutors seek revenge for the death of an officer during a drug bust gone wrong.

The AMC Studios series also stars Mark O’Brien, Holt McCallany, Tosin Cole, Andrene Ward-Hammond and Bentley Green. It is executive produced by Moffat, Shanks, Michael B. Jordan and Outlier Society, Alana Mayo, Jeff Freilich and Hilary Salmon.

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