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Arts & Culture
These articles were excerpted from Tapestry, a weekly newsletter that examines the arts and entertainment world in Charlotte and North Carolina.

'Charlotte Is Actually A Character' In New OWN Show 'Delilah'

Oftentimes, when movies or TV shows film in locations, they’re looking for a general “city” feel. "Homeland," which filmed in Charlotte from 2011-14, for instance, used the city’s skyscrapers to suggest Washington, D.C., and suburban areas for northern Virginia. The setting was never supposed to actually be Charlotte.

But in the new Oprah Winfrey Network’s TV series “Delilah,” which premieres Tuesday at 9 p.m., Charlotte is a main character.

The skyline is in the opening credits. Delilah clearly walks through Fourth Ward when she exits her house and stops for lunch at an uptown restaurant. Another character in the series opener worked for a company in Gastonia (side note: What is with Gastonia having its moment in the sun recently?).

"Delilah" is notable for its focus on strong, Black women as lead characters in the show. But another character will probably be of interest to Charlotteans.

"Many shows have shot here, but I believe we are the first where Charlotte is actually a character," said executive producer Charles Randolph-Wright.

Charles Randolph-Wright
Charles Randolph-Wright speaks at a virtual premiere of "Delilah."

Randolph-Wright is a York, South Carolina, native and said he leapt at the opportunity to work on the show – even during the COVID-19 era.

“Returning to Charlotte to executive produce and direct a new series on the OWN network and to work with the astounding executive producer Oprah Winfrey was beyond my wildest dreams,” he said. “It still is beyond the wildest dreams of this child from Carolina. But in Carolina, we do know how to dream and to dream big. ...

“Charlotte, you opened your doors, and even though we could not hug, you opened your arms to our production, which became your production.”

In typical Oprah fashion, Winfrey gushed about “Deliiiiiiilaaaaaah” in a virtual premiere and expressed gratitude for the ease with which Charlotte embraced the series. Rumor has it that Mayor Vi Lyles will make an appearance in the show, and City Council member Braxton Winston worked as a grip on the production.

“I'm extremely proud of the work that we have done — oh, my goodness — on this show in the Queen City during COVID, honey,” Winfrey said. “Everybody on the set having to be masked up, double-masked up, wearing masks and shields. So, we were welcomed to the Queen City with such open arms from the beginning."

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey speaks at a virtual premiere of "Delilah."

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