While slaves certainly could not have imagined their struggles would be documented, as both complete freedom and modern mass media were inconceivable at the time, the actors that brought the period to life on the TV show Underground weren’t entirely sure that they had a hit in the making.

Though most of them hoped that the show would do well, they knew the subject matter might prove alienating to some viewers. But Underground has been a huge hit for little-known cable network WGN America, which has seen it bring in the highest ratings for the network in 18 years.

Mostly known as a Chicago-based network, WGN’s last highest rated show was live baseball, during the Cubs vs. Cardinals game in 1988 where Mark McGwire beat Roger Maris’ single season home run record.

“We couldn’t be happier with the outstanding performance of Underground, but the overwhelmingly positive response of the audience to this story about the unsung American heroes of the Underground Railroad is even more gratifying,” said Matt Cherniss, president and general manager, WGN America and Tribune Studios.  “The talented creators Misha Green and Joe Pokaski, along with the producers and an amazing cast and crew, have created something truly special.”

The show’s 10 episodes are based around a group of slaves heading for freedom from a plantation in Georgia. Anchored by Aldis Hodge and Jurnee Smollett Bell (with an upcoming cameo by brother Jussie Smollett) the show delves into the complicated relationships between slave masters, slaves, and slave catchers in the 1800’s.

We asked a few of the actors and actresses on Underground what drew them to the show:

Check out the video below:

Aldis Hodge and Jurnee Smollett Bell

Alano Miller and Renwick Scott

Anthony Hemingway

Underground airs on WGN America on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. You can watch full episodes HERE.

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6 thoughts on “‘Underground’ Stars Talk Slavery, History And More; Show Keeps Breaking Records [WATCH]

  1. Timekeeper on said:

    Ian & Shybug. You both have very good points even though they are opposite. There is a part of me that has seen it all from Mandingo to Roots, Eyes on the Prize ( which is the one people really ought to see) as well as countless other TV movies, documentaries, etc, etc. In addition to that I have lived thru a portion of it so I know it all too well , first hand. So I really don’t want to see anymore either. However, there are so many people ( mostly 40 and under) who have never lived thru it, and for some reason don’t have any ides or RESPECT for those who have had to deal with it. For those people and more I believe it does need to be on the air. Too many feel there is some magic bridge of equality we crossed over a little while back. And as some of today’s politics have shown, that clearly didn’t happen. Have a great weekend to you both.

  2. FrankDHayden on said:

    ❥━━━————–❥home job for Every one❥—————-━━━❥
    I’ve made $76,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. Im using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it….
    Heres what I do ———-
    ➤➤➤➤➤➤ …Special-Work-At-Home…
    ❥━━━——————————-❥❥———————————━━━❥

  3. Kimboo on said:

    Thank you spirits… to those shoulders who have blessed me with my fighting spirit of forgiveness and righteousness… Thank you Lord for my time and era to be able to pass this on to the generation behind me… Corporate America has never been so colorful 🙂

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