OWN’s new legal drama Delilah tells the story of single mother and lawyer Delilah Connolly as she fights for justice and takes a stand for people needing help.
The series stars Maahra Hill in the title role alongside Girlfriends alum Jill Marie Jones, who plays ambitious lawyer Tamara Grayson.
“To portray an African-American woman as someone who is strong but also vulnerable, who is smart but also at a loss as times, who’s balancing a life—a full life—and simultaneously taking care of things with such an intense drive that are meaningful to her and the people around her. The role is like a dream role for me,” Hill told reporters at a virtual news conference.
As previously reported, the series centers on the two attorneys and confidantes who are at odds over a court case Tamara warned Delilah not to take. Now they will battle it out as opposing counsels — something that’s never happened to them throughout their friendship.
“That dynamic that she has with Tamara is a long-lived friendship that began in an emotional place that connected the two of them in a beautiful way, and so like every friendship there’s ups and there’s down. This season it gets hard for them to manage, but the love is strong and the bond is incredible,” Hill explained.
She was joined on the panel by executive producer Charles Randolph-Wright and Greenleaf and Delilah creator Craig Wright. As for what inspired the series about two Black female attorneys in Charlotte, North Carolina; Craig Wright said the idea started with Oprah Winfrey and the OWN audience.
“Oprah and I just wanted to do a story about women who were living everyday lives. The women who watch OWN, the women who have watched Greenleaf — all the people who have watched Greenleaf, but especially the women,” Wright said in the video interview.
He added that the show focuses on “all the different worlds that they have to move through every day and all the different things they have to carry: at the workplace, in their family, in their love lives, with their friends, and in the country.”
The series was filmed in Charlotte, North Carolina during the ongoing coronavirus crisis. Randolph-Wright talked about the challenges of filming during a global pandemic.
“All of a sudden, you have to find a completely new way of working,” he explained. “You have to figure out how you can’t have as many people in scenes and people have to be away from each other, and just different things that one normally would not think about, we had to do. And in the meantime, also wanted to keep it again, as authentic as possible.”
Randolph-Wright credited Hill and Jones as leaders who helped the cast find a way to work “diligently.”
Additional cast members include Lyriq Bent, Adrian Eppley, Nigel Gibbs, Leonard Harmon, Gray Hawks, Joe Holt, and Braelyn Rankins. Warner Bros. Television and Harpo Films produced the series.
Delilah premieres tonight at 9 p.m. ET/PT on OWN. Watch the trailer below: