We contacted Damilare Sonoiki on Instagram and just like that he gave us his e-mail address. A week later, I was talking to him on the phone. Down to earth, the Nigerian writer almost made me forget that he had written some of the scripts of one of my favourite series: Black-ish. In fact, Damilare Sonoiki is a Harvard graduate in Economics. He worked several years on Wall Street before abandoning everything to follow his dreams to Los Angeles and work on writing scripts for TV.
The trailer of his new project made millions of views on Facebook and more than 200.000 on Youtube. The series is called African Booty Scratcher. It may sound weird for people not living in USA but as the writer says “It is how people with an African accent in USA are called by the African Americans. I used to be called this way in school.” Why “African Booty Scratcher” though? It’s a term that was used long ago to describe a slave that was used to scratch their masters’ booties because they were too lazy to scratch their own asses. “I just like the idea of taking something negative and poking fun at it. We are going to turn around and actually take away the power from it.” argues Damilare to defend his title judged provocative by some.
African Booty Scratcher tells the story of a Nigerian family trying to find their place in USA. Damilare is telling his own story but he thinks that everybody can relate “People watching black-ish that are not even black relate to the story […] On Youtube, 60% of the viewers are not even in USA.”
African Booty Scratcher is not just a project anymore, since it’s crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter managed to raise more than 30 000 $ ! Damilare thinks that mainstream TV is ready for this kind of content. “Black Americans and a whole lot of other people like this cultural specific shows.” The writer hopes to see African Booty Scratcher on Netflix. For now, he just aims to write more TV show scripts and maybe a movie.
P.S. If you are watching Black-ish, I asked if the little girl playing one of the twins of the family was as petty in real life than in the series and he said “not that much. She’s a sweet girl.” Can we just hope that she appears in one of the episode of African Booty Scratcher?