Unlimited Media’s Frederator Studios is developing a kids and family animated series that will highlight extraordinary African American women and men—plus other trailblazing people of color—who have been either overlooked or left out of traditional history books.
Hidden Heroes is based on a same-name series of Black History-themed plays by journalist and historian Abigail McGrath (pictured). McGrath is also well-known as the founder of the Renaissance House writer’s retreat on Martha’s Vineyard, which supports writers who focus on issues of race, gender equality and social justice.
Frederator hopes the series, which targets 11- to 17-year-olds, has co-viewing potential. While the plays have focused on African American men including Frederick Douglass, Crispus Attucks and Benjamin Banneker, the series will add women and other people of color into the mix. Frederator is still working on finalizing a format and animation style for the project.
California-based writing and producing team Shawnee’ and Shawnelle Gibbs are working with Frederator’s director of development Nikki Price to adapt the series for TV. The sisters most recently served as staff writers on HBO Max’s upcoming animated children’s series Little Ellen, and have also worked on projects for Warner Bros. Animation, Mattel Studios and DreamWorks Animation.