Russell Hornsby stars as Charles Flenory in the hit Starz drama series BMF. Set in the 1980s in Detroit, the series chronicles the real-life story of brothers, Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory (Demetrius “Lil Meech” Flenory Jr.) and Terry “Southwest T” Flenory (Da’Vinchi). As teens, the brothers began their drug business, eventually becoming two of the biggest drug traffickers in the country despite their parents’ attempts to get them on a straight path.
Though drugs are the brothers’ business, Hornsby says BMF is much deeper than that.
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At the end of the first season of BMF, Big Meech and Terry went their separate ways. Meech was gaining traction in the city, while Terry wanted to get out entirely. Now, Lil Meech explains that season 2 will focus on Demetrius’ transformation. “Well, I can’t spoil it, but I can tell you, [it’s about] elevation,” Lil Meech told PopSugar. “Big Meech and his mind, even at 15, 16 [years old], he thought like a grown man . . . He always wanted to take over the world. And to a regular person it [might] sound crazy, but he did everything he said he was going to do.”
He added, “I can tell you that [Big Meech] has to elevate his mind. Everything about him is elevating, so he’s becoming bigger, wealthier, [and] wiser.”
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As much as the series is about the drug business and the eventual influx of the crack cocaine endemic amid the War on Drugs, it’s also about the failures of the country’s public policies. So many things had to go wrong for a pair of teen brothers to begin a multimillion-dollar drug business in the inner city of Detroit.
“I would like audiences to look beyond of what they are doing and ask questions about what is going on behind the scenes,” Hornsby explained to the Albuquerque Journal. “When you examine the Flenory household and you see a community that was plagued by the apathetic nature of the country. A country that has let the populous down. People often says, ‘They shouldn’t be doing drugs or how and why do they deal drugs.’ The better question is looking beyond the surface. Because these communities are being let down, we are seeing inflation and the lack of opportunity. We’re not educating our populous. We should have better public schools. We should have universal health care. When you look at films that are period pieces, it gives you an opportunity that affects the now.”
From their community to the power players in Detroit at the time, BMF is extremely accurate. It was also helpful that creator and showrunner Randy Huggins is from Detroit and executive producer Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson got the Flenory family involved as well.
“I took some liberties, but everything there is based on a story,” Huggins told Urban Hollywood 411. “Obviously, you can’t have people’s names in there. Obviously, some of the places may have changed.”
However, Huggins was adamant that every character was some version of an actual living person with a bit of flair. “I don’t think there’s a character in there, that I hadn’t heard of,” he said. “I may have to take a creative liberty to make an art pop a little bit more. I may have to take a creative license to make a scene funnier than it may have been, but that’s just part of telling a story. This is not a documentary.”
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