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WGN America Releases First Look of John Legend as Renowned Abolitionist Frederick Douglass in Season Two of 'Underground'

LOS ANGELES, March 3, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- WGN America has released a first look image of Grammy, Golden Globe and Academy Award winning artist John Legend as renowned abolitionist Frederick Douglass in the hit series "Underground." Legend, who is an executive producer alongside the series creators, Misha Green and Joe Pokaski, guest stars in the highly anticipated second season returning Wednesday, March 8, 2017 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT. Continuing with the series' contemporary soundtrack that keeps up with the urgency of the storytelling, the season two premiere also features a new, original song from Legend entitled, "In America" as well as Beyoncé's Grammy nominated smash single "Freedom." 

Pictured Above: “Underground” Executive Producer, John Legend, Guest-Starring as Frederick Douglass in Season Two Premiering Wednesday, March 8 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on WGN America. Link to Download High-Res Photos: https://spaces.hightail.com/receive/oUONY/a3Jpc3RhY0BmZXJlbmNvbW0uY29t

Season two of the ten-episode, hour-long series follows an unrelenting struggle for freedom within a divided America on the brink of civil war, each side vying to enact their own justice. In the premiere, a desperate Rosalee (Jurnee Smollett-Bell) anxiously awaiting Noah's (Aldis Hodge) release from prison, joins forces with Harriet Tubman (Aisha Hinds) to fend off slave catchers and secure the safe passage of runaways.  As John (Marc Blucas) battles for Noah's freedom in the courtroom, Elizabeth's (Jessica de Gouw) take a more subversive path to abolitionism, entering into a secret society known as "the sewing circle." Meanwhile, Ernestine (Amirah Vann) struggles with personal demons and seductive vices at a new plantation.  The fight for freedom continues, even as tragedy strikes.

In celebration of the season two launch, fans are invited to "tweet up" with the cast and creative team as they live tweet the premiere episode, @UndergroundWGN. Fans can also catch up with "Underground" in advance of the premiere with a day-long, full season one marathon airing Wednesday, March 8, 2017 beginning at 12:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Leading up to the premiere, WGN America hosted a star-studded world premiere event on Tuesday, February 28 at the Westwood Village Theater in Los Angeles attended by: John Legend, Chrissy Teigen, Angela Bassett, Cedric the Entertainer, Cuba Gooding Jr., Jussie Smollett, Bruno Gunn, Affion Crocket, Chandler Kinney, Christina Ochoa, Cynthia Erivo, Janina Gayankar, Michael Jai White, Lane Miller, Laz Alonso, Tommy Davidson, Trevor Jackson, Cullen Moss, and more. The season two premiere was also honored with a screening and panel discussion at the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) on Wednesday, February 22.

The celebrated "Underground" cast includes: Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Rosalee ("Friday Night Lights," The Great Debaters), Aldis Hodge as Noah (Straight Outta Compton, Hidden Figures), Jessica de Gouw as Elizabeth Hawkes ("Arrow," "Dracula"), Alano Miller as Cato (Loving, "Atlanta"), Christopher Meloni as August Pullman ("Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," Sin City: A Dame to Kill For), Amirah Vann as Ernestine ("Girls," And So It Goes) and Marc Blucas as John Hawkes ("Blue Bloods").  Season two newcomers include Aisha Hinds ("Under the Dome," Star Trek Into Darkness) in the pioneering role of Harriet Tubman, as well as Jasika Nicole as Georgia ("Fringe," "Scandal"), DeWanda Wise as Clara ("Shots Fired"), Bokeem Woodbine as Daniel ("Fargo"), Michael Trotter as Biographer ("Rosewood"), Jesse Luken as Smoke ("Justified," 42) Sadie Stratton as Patty Cannon ("Code Black," "Boy Meets World") and Robert Christopher Riley as Hicks ("Hit the Floor").

The award-winning "Underground" was recently honored with a number of recognitions including four NAACP Image Awards nominations for Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series (Jurnee Smollett-Bell), Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series (Amirah Vann) and Outstanding Directing in a Dramatic Series (Anthony Hemingway).   Additionally, the African American Film Critics Association named "Underground" as Best TV Show (Cable/New Media) and the second highest show overall for 2016, and honored Director Anthony Hemmingway with their 2017 Horizon Award.  The series also won several awards at the inaugural Cynopsis TV Awards including Best New Drama Series, Best Series Writing (Drama) and Best Showrunner.

The critically-acclaimed series was nominated today for a 43rd Annual Saturn Award for Best Action Thriller Television Series.

Hailing from Sony Pictures Television, "Underground" is created and written by Misha Green ("Sons of Anarchy," "Heroes") and Joe Pokaski ("Heroes," "Daredevil"), who serve as Executive Producers alongside Emmy-winning director Anthony Hemingway ("The People v. O.J. Simpson," "Treme"); Academy Award-winning writer Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind, I Am Legend) of Weed Road Pictures; Tory Tunnell (King Arthur, Holy Rollers) and Joby Harold (King Arthur, Edge of Tomorrow) of Safehouse Pictures; John Legend, Mike Jackson and Ty Stiklorius of Get Lifted Film Co (La La Land, Southside with You); and Mark Taylor ("MadTV").

For official "Underground" products and merchandise, go to http://www.wgnamerica.com/series/underground/shop/.

About WGN America
WGN America, the flagship entertainment network of Tribune Media Company (TRCO) is nationally distributed in approximately 80 million homes via cable, satellite and telco, with high-quality entertainment programming including the breakout hit series "Outsiders" and "Underground." The network also brings its audience a strong slate of popular first-run syndicated series and blockbuster movies. Follow the network on Twitter @wgnamerica. For additional information, please visit www.wgnamerica.com.

About Sony Pictures Television
Sony Pictures Television is one of the television industry's leading content providers, producing and distributing programming worldwide in every genre and for every platform. In addition to managing one of the industry's largest libraries of award-winning feature films, television shows and formats, SPT is home to a thriving US production business and operates 17 wholly-owned or joint venture production companies in 13 countries around the world. SPT's worldwide networks portfolio includes 150 channel feeds, which are available in 178 countries reaching more than 1.3 billion cumulative households worldwide. Sony Pictures Television (SPT) is a Sony Pictures Entertainment Company.

Links to View Trailers

Season two full-length trailer: 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nOEUogI7pQhttps://youtu.be/O-ofsO8DX6Y 

"Underground" first look:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwYlrBrJdqU

 John Legend's "In America" featured trailer:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvffLUL2K0c&feature=youtu.be 

Link to Download High-Res Photos: https://spaces.hightail.com/receive/Mbb6X/cmFjaGVsY0BmZXJlbmNvbW0uY29t  

Social Media Handles:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UndergroundWGN
Twitter:  @UndergroundWGN
Instagram:@UndergroundWGN

"Underground" cast on Twitter:

Jurnee Smollett-Bell @jurneesmollett
Aldis Hodge @AldisHodge
Alano Miller @AlanoMiller
Jessica de Gouw
@jessdegouw
Amirah Vann @amirahvann
Christopher Meloni
@Chris_Meloni
Marc Blucas @marcblucas
Aisha Hinds @AishaHinds
Jasika Nicole @TheJasikaNicole
DeWanda Wise @DeWandaWise
Jesse Luken @JesseLuken 
Sadie Stratton @sadie_stratton

"Underground" creative team on Twitter:

John Legend @johnlegend
Misha Green @MishaGreen
Joe Pokaski @JoePokaski
Anthony Hemingway
@shinybootz
Akiva Goldsman @AkivaGoldsman
Mike Jackson @mikejackson
Ty Stiklorius
@tystiklorius

Media Contacts:
Rita Cooper Lee
WGN America and Tribune Studios
424.702.4448
rcooperlee@tribunemedia.com

Dawn Lach
WGN America and Tribune Studios
424.278.6383
dlach@tribunemedia.com

Krista Zoch / Nicole Anaejionu
FerenComm for WGN America
212.983.9898
kristac@ferencomm.com / nicolea@ferencomm.com

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