Earlier this year, we announced that Shonda Rhimes would be teaming up with Jesse Williams, Norman Lear, and Common to produce a powerful new docu-series titled American Divided. Rosario Dawson has just been added to the project as a celebrity correspondent. America Divided will feature narratives around inequality in education, housing, healthcare, labor, criminal justice and the political system in an eight-story, four-and-half hour series.
“America Divided is a nonpartisan investigation of the key issues shaping the presidential campaign, and we are confident our viewers will find each episode compelling and accessible.” – Epix CEO Mark S. Greenberg
The series will follow high-profile correspondents as they explore aspects of inequality related to their own biographies. Dawson has been tapped to explore the ongoing causes and legacy of the Flint, Michigan water crisis. Common returns to his hometown of Chicago, ground zero for disparities in the criminal justice system. America Ferrera travels to Texas to witness battles around access to the ballot and healthcare for poor women. Actor and comedian Zach Galifianakis investigates the political landscape in his home state of North Carolina and considers how it’s emblematic of the country’s deepening political divide during the 2016 campaign. Legendary TV producer Norman Lear, an original member of the Television Academy Hall of Fame, reports on the housing crisis in New York from people who have no homes to luxury apartments purposely kept vacant. Actress and producer Amy Poehler witnesses the complex challenges faced by domestic workers who maintain an intimate relationship with the families that employ them, while also struggling for better conditions. Actor and activist Peter Sarsgaard explores the addiction crisis ravaging a heartland beset by unemployment and the shuttering of America’s factories. And Grey’s Anatomy star and former teacher Jesse Williams goes back to the classroom and becomes immersed in the battle to fix inequality in education.
“The promise of the American dream was a united country where everyone is treated equal. That promise has clearly been broken; all you have to do is look around to see that our reality has been built on the back of inequality. It’s my hope that this series will inspire audiences to be part of a change that leads us into a stronger, more equal future.” –Shonda Rhimes