“The Proud Family” has become an essential aspect of Black culture. After initially premiering in the early 2000s, the brand has inspired a generation, won numerous awards, and even received a nod from Beyoncé, Jay-Z and family who once dressed as the Proud Family.
In time for Black History Month, Disney+ released season 2 of “The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder.”
ADW recently caught up with the creators of “The Proud Family,” Ralph Farquhar and Bruce W. Smith to discuss the new season and legacy.
“The Proud Family” represents the essence of Black culture. Why is this project so important to the community?
Smith: It resonates with the community. And that tells us when we make the show, we kind of follow the FUBU brand, right? It’s ‘For us, By us.’ We really make sure that the atmosphere and experience is displayed on screen so you get the most authentic, real experience. We feel like that’s sort of the ingredients of making the show.
Farquhar: Black folks, everybody has a Sugar Mama. Everybody’s got an Uncle Bobby. You know, everybody’s got a Dijonay. She’s a tough friend to have. So we like to think that our characters and our situations just resonate in terms of our collective experience. If you will, as Black people.
There’s so many prominent names who are guests. What was it like working with so many notable figures?
Smith: Our shows are kind of a great mixture of the African American experience. So that would include music and dance. And a lot of people who are on the show were fans growing up and watching it. With Lizzo, she made it a point to come into the recording booth singing. And the actors and actresses who have kids now, they know they can watch the proud family together. So it becomes an experience that they’ve all sort of jumped in and and and really enjoyed the experience of being behind the mic for this show.
“The Proud Family” is one of the shows that is leading that resurgence of Black content on TV. What are your thoughts on the resurgence?
Farquhar: I’ve benefited from the 1990s with “Moesha” and “The Parkers,” and shows like “South Central.” And now you’re starting to see a resurgence. It’s interesting, it’s sort of coupled with the emergence of streaming. So there are more buyers and typically everyone wants to get a plug into the African American audience. Because we’re a very loyal, dependable demographic. So you’re seeing tons of shows out there. Not only are there tons of shows, but more importantly, they’re being made by people who would not have gotten the opportunity. So we got a lot of fresh new voices, people of color, and it’s quite refreshing.
View entire interview below: