Interview: The Creative Team Behind ‘Bel-Air’ on Adapting the Sitcom into a Compelling Drama

One of the most popular sitcoms of the 1990s, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, is getting a fresh new dramatic spin in the form of Peacock’s Bel-Air. Based on a viral trailer by Morgan Cooper, this show brings West Philly’s Will Smith into the twenty-first century, where his family’s mansion is even bigger and his adjustment into high society isn’t a laughing matter.

Awards Radar had the chance to hear from the people behind the show: Cooper, who serves as director, co-writer, and executive producer, and co-showrunners T.J. Brady and Rasheed Newson. Cooper shared his unexpected journey to this show becoming a reality:

“I knew it was a special idea from the onset. I knew it was something with a lot of potential. I’ve always been the type of artist that just focuses on what I can control, and one thing I could have controlled is what I make. I knew very shortly after we made it that this is something that could end up being much bigger, but at the same time, you never know what viewers are going to respond to, ultimately. All you can control is that the art that you make and making sure that it comes from an honest and authentic place, and that’s what I did. Thankfully, the fans were extremely excited when the trailer dropped and the enthusiasm has continued to this day.”

Watch the full conversations below!

Bel-Air debuts with three episodes on Super Bowl Sunday, with one new episode per week each Thursday.


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Written by Abe Friedtanzer

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