Actress Tasha Smith has signed on to direct multiple episodes of the Starz series Black Mafia Family. A veteran in the acting field known for her fiery delivery, Smith has directed episodes of several groundbreaking television series including P-Valley and Tales.
Executive produced by 50 Cent as part of his overall deal with Starz, the show is based on the true crime story of illustrious drug kingpins Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory and Terry “Southwest T” Flenory.
The Flenory brothers built a national operation after rising out of poverty in Detroit by emphasizing the need for unquestionable loyalty and equitable distribution of wealth in the late 1980s. Their money flooded impoverished cities across the country and instigated allegiances between notorious street gangs in the name of the dollar. Their achievements have been the center of hip-hop lore for decades. Rick Ross, Young Jeezy, 2 Chainz, Styles P, Gucci Mane, and more have name-dropped their exploits on tracks. They’ve also inspired a book and multiple documentaries.
Big Meech’s flamboyance inspired a legion of devoted followers while Southwest T’s quiet strength and business skillset allowed the pair to dream beyond the underground economy. At the time of their fall, they had their sights set on conquering the hip-hop industry but the beliefs that bound them together and propelled them to hood stardom would ultimately tear them apart.
Demetrius “Lil Meech” Flenory Jr., the son of Demetrius, will portray his father. Starring alongside him will be Da’Vinchi (All American, Grown-ish). Wood Harris (Empire, Creed, The Wire) will appear in a recurring role with his brother Steve Harris (Friday Night Lights, Filthy Rich). Russell Hornsby (The Hate U Give, Creed II) and Detroit native Arkeisha “Kash Doll” Knight have signed on for recurring roles as well.
In sharing the news this week, Smith wrote on Instagram, “Not only do I get to direct @bmfstarz PILOT for @50cent but I get to work with such an amazing cast.”
Filming for the series will take place in Detroit and Atlanta.