Kenya Barris Accused of Stealing Black-ish Show Idea, Which Is Probably the Only Thing That Could Ruin This Month for Him

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Black-ish creator Kenya Barris has been accused of lifting the Emmy-nominated show’s concept from an unproduced pilot he cowrote with Idlewild director Bryan Barber. According to Barber, who also directed several Outkast videos, the pilot of their sitcom had been written for VH1 and was based in part on Barber’s life, focusing on the “successful, creative, and affluent black man working in the predominantly white entertainment industry.” The two shows reportedly share certain similarities, including a wife character named Rainbow who is often referred to as Bow. Barber accuses Barris of cutting him out of the project and reconfiguring their work into the current ABC hit comedy. In addition to Barris, who just this week signed a movie deal with 20th Century Fox, Barber is suing Larry Wilmore’s Wilmore Films, Principato-Young Entertainment, and Cinema Gypsy Productions for more than one million dollars as well as “a full accounting, creator, and writer credit and compensation” and “all derivative, ancillary, and merchandising rights and interests.”