NBC Bringing Underground Railroad Miniseries to TV with EP Stevie Wonder

There’s been a little rumbling going ’round about BET’s upcoming event series, “The Book of Negroes,” which I’m really excited about, but that’s not the only slave-based miniseries coming to TV. The Hollywood Reporter is stating that NBC has announced they’re developing a miniseries about The Underground Railroad based on Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories From the Underground Railroad by Betty DeRamus. But the biggest surprise withiin this surprise is that Stevie Wonder (!) is an executive producer.

“We’re increasingly looking for projects that qualify as television events and these harrowing true stories of courageous young men and women who have found love, in spite of the heinousness of slavery, certainly does that,” said NBC’s entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt, who also revealed that NBC is also working on creating a Broadway musical version of this miniseries. Greenblatt said the chance to create a musical with Wonder “is very exciting as we look to expand the scope of our live stage business. We’re thrilled that these producers wanted to bring this important project to us.”

Color me extremely surprised. Also, with this being the third  American miniseries making news on this site (the other three being the already-mentioned Book of NegroesAgent Carter and Tut), it would seem that America really is going the way of the miniseries. Soon, they’ll just be called “series.”

I’m bringing this up because I’ve been having some convos on Twitter about why Agent Carter couldn’t be a full-fledged season. The commenter makes a valid point as to why a miniseries (the length of which is something akin to the length of a British series) is a much more successful way to make a great, tight, television story.

With the addition of this Underground Railroad miniseries, it would seem that not only is slavery en vogue with TV networks, but so are smaller series sizes. What do you think about this news? Give your opinions in the comments section below!