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Roots 

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An adaptation of Alex Haley's "Roots", chronicling the history of an African man sold to slavery in America, and his descendants.
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1  
2016  
Nominated for 7 Primetime Emmys. Another 4 wins & 44 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Herbert Cavalier Jr. ...  Town Folk 4 episodes, 2016
Jonathan Rhys Meyers ...  Tom Lea 3 episodes, 2016
Malachi Kirby ...  Kunta Kinte 3 episodes, 2016
Forest Whitaker ...  Fiddler 3 episodes, 2016
Laurence Fishburne ...  Alex Haley 3 episodes, 2016
Babs Olusanmokun ...  Omoro Kinte 3 episodes, 2016
Tevin Paul ...  Freed Slave Soldier / ... 3 episodes, 2016
Kerry Sims Kerry Sims ...  Slave 3 episodes, 2016
Matthew Goode ...  Dr. William Waller 2 episodes, 2016
Regé-Jean Page ...  Chicken George 2 episodes, 2016
Emayatzy Corinealdi ...  Belle 2 episodes, 2016
Shannon Lucio ...  Patricia Lea 2 episodes, 2016
James Purefoy ...  John Waller 2 episodes, 2016
Erica Tazel ...  Matilda 2 episodes, 2016
Derek Luke ...  Silla Ba Dibba 2 episodes, 2016
Katie McGuinness ...  Elizabeth Waller 2 episodes, 2016
Anika Noni Rose ...  Kizzy 2 episodes, 2016
Tony Curran ...  Connelly 2 episodes, 2016
Adam Fergus ...  Sir Eric Russell 2 episodes, 2016
Nokuthula Ledwaba Nokuthula Ledwaba ...  Binta Kinte 2 episodes, 2016
Carol Sutton ...  Miss Malizy 2 episodes, 2016
Chris Obi ...  Kintango 2 episodes, 2016
Roman L. Armstrong ...  Kunta Kinte Dbl / ... 2 episodes, 2016
Cortney McClelland Jr. Cortney McClelland Jr. ...  Newborn Chicken George 2 episodes, 2016
David Shiflett David Shiflett ...  Chicken Fight Gambler 2 episodes, 2016
Darrell L. Shuler Darrell L. Shuler ...  Waller Slave 2 episodes, 2016
Calvin Williams Calvin Williams ...  Waller Slave / ... 2 episodes, 2016
Sam Woodworth Sam Woodworth ...  Confederate Soldier / ... 2 episodes, 2016
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Storyline

An adaptation of Alex Haley's "Roots", chronicling the history of an African man sold to slavery in America, and his descendants.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Your name is your shield See more »


Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Hulu | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

Mandingo | English

Release Date:

30 May 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Roots See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The author Alex Haley was sued successfully for plagiarizing by novelist Harold Courlander. The works he plagiarized led to the book that served as the basis for the mini-series Roots. Haley paid $650,000 in an out of court settlement. See more »

Goofs

(From the trailer) when the cannon is exploding, all the gun crew are wearing wide red stripes on their trouser kegs. The stripe was only worn by sergeants. However in the scene the cannon is being tested, ALL the crew are specialist NCOs and the scene comes at the very beginning of the Civil War, before there has been much action. Hence the artillerymen are carrying no personal weapons and their uniforms are particularly clean (before the explosion) and all have red trouser stripes. See more »

Connections

Version of Roots (1977) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Beautiful & Terrible Film
5 June 2016 | by stacymattthomasSee all my reviews

First, I admit I don't remember seeing the first Roots. I may have when I was young but I don't remember it and I've never read the book so I came into the story with no presuppositions. Even though this is a work of fiction (that Mr Haley apparently plagiarized) it is a work of fiction based in historical fact. Like many incredible works of literature or film the thread of the story may be fiction but it's set in a very real period in history.

All that to say, I'm astonished by some of the reviews on this board. It seems some want a polished up version of history, a Gone With the Wind version that is still ugly if you look close enough at the nuances of the story. The truth is, humans were stolen from their homes and the only world they had ever known or seen and then their traffickers sold them like they were livestock or furniture or maybe even less. They had no rights and every single thing - especially their dignity - was stripped from them. They were dropped into a world they didn't understand or recognize, without even the fortune of common language. This isn't some made up perspective to suit the politics of Black Lives Matter or anything else, it is fact.

If a movie were set in the early 1940's in Germany and the story was about a Jewish family who were actually treated decently by their "Christian" jailers while they were living in a concentration camp, that showed some good sides to the camp as well, everyone would RIGHTFULLY be appalled. But here? No, it seems some want to polish up this ugly stain of American history and call it decoration rather than what it was - horrific.

Okay, so now that I got that off my chest... I found myself crying through many parts of this miniseries and gripped by the injustices at every step. I wanted some happy endings too but only because I was drawn in and rooting for the main characters, but I also realize that happy endings rarely happened during this era for Africans and African Americans and as they rarely had control over their own lives they must have had to deal with the emptiness of unfinished stories, unanswered questions, the sickness of not knowing what happened to their loved ones when they were stolen or violated or sold off. As the viewer I felt that pain and I empathized with the main characters. The apathy and sometimes hatred coming from the slave owners and traders and the way one sin would lead to another and to another so even those with some sense of decency were quick to treat black people as less than and not equal to as soon as they felt threatened or to feel better about their standing in society. This Roots was more The Kitchen House than Gone with the Wind, as viewers we benefit from that fact.

The production and settings were gorgeous and the actors were as well. I thought this was a beautiful telling of a most terrible time.


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