‘Wonder Years’: Dulé Hill Joins ABC’s Reboot Pilot
ABC has found their family patriarch for their reboot pilot of ‘The Wonder Years’, as it’s announced former ‘Suits’ and ‘The West Wing’ star Dulé Hill will take up the role.
Written by Saladin Patterson (‘Dave’, ‘Psych’, ‘The Big Bang Theory’) and directed by Fred Savage himself, the series focuses on the Williamses, a Black middle-class family in the late 1960s Alabama, made sure it was the Wonder Years for them too. The story centres around Dean (Elisha “EJ” Williams), an inquisitive and hopeful 12-year-old kid coming of age in a turbulent time.
Hill takes the role of Bill Williams, father to Dean. He’s a music professor by day and a funk musician by night – described by Adult Dean as “The baddest guy I knew.” Almost always calm and composed, his favourite words are “be cool.” Bill wants his family and their black, middle-class neighbourhood to remain self-sufficient and he puts his money where his mouth is.
Dulé Hill is probably best known for his roles on ‘The West Wing’ as Charles Young, personal aide to the President, ‘Suits’, where he joined the show in Season 7 as Alex Williams, and ‘Psych’, where he played Burton “Gus” Guster. He also had a recurring role on ‘Ballers’ and a main role on the short-lived CBS series ‘Doubt’.
Also joining the cast is Laura Kariuki, who is currently starring in the final season of ‘Black Lighting’, where she takes over the role of Jennifer after actress China Anne McClain decided to leave the show. Kariuki plays Kim Williams, Dean’s teenage sister, who is confident, bright and popular. She and Dean bicker as siblings do but they have a good relationship. Her parents have her preparing for college – but Kim is starting to rebel, telling them “Bobby Seale and H. Rap Brown didn’t even finish college” and that she’ll learn more from Eldridge Cleaver’s “Soul on Ice” than the SAT’s.
Hill and Kariuki join the previously cast Elisha “EJ” Williams and Saycon Sengbloh (‘In The Dark’, ‘Scandal’) who plays Dean’s mother, Lillian. She is described as confident, kind, perceptive and has a good sense of humour. She knows exactly the right thing to say to convince you of anything. As a mother, wife and full-time accountant, she’s organized, efficient and hard-working, but she always puts family first.
‘The Wonder Years’ is a single-camera comedy that is being piloted for ABC, meaning it may, or may not go to series. We’ll let you know when we hear more.