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Behind the Scenes: Exclusive Insights from the Cast and Crew of Apple TV+’s “The Big Cigar”

The Big Cigar on Apple+ TV
By: Tammy Reese| The Big Cigar | Imagery: Apple TV+

Starring André Holland as Black Panther leader Huey P. Newton, the upcoming limited drama series, Apple TV+'s “The Big Cigar,” premieres globally on Friday, May 17th, 2024 with the first two episodes followed by new episodes every Friday through June 14. The first two episodes are directed by multiple-award winner Don Cheadle.

Based on the magazine article of the same name from Joshuah Bearman (“Argo”), who also serves as executive producer, “The Big Cigar” tells the incredible true story of Hollywood revolution meeting social revolution: it’s a wild caper of Black Panther founder Huey Newton escaping from the FBI to Cuba with the assistance of famed producer Bert Schneider in an impossibly elaborate plan — involving a fake movie production — that goes wrong every way it possibly can. And somehow, it’s all true. Mostly.

Apple Tv+'s "The Big Cigar"

Image: Apple TV+

André Holland leads a renowned ensemble cast including Alessandro NivolaTiffany BoonePJ ByrneMarc MenchacaMoses IngramRebecca DaltonOlli HaaskiviJordane Christie, and Glynn Turman. Written by Jim Hecht, from a story by Bearman and Hecht, “The Big Cigar” hails from Warner Bros. Television, where NAACP Image Award winner Janine Sherman Barrois and her Folding Chair Productions are under an overall deal. The drama is executive produced by Hecht and Sherman Barrois, as well as Bearman, Joshua Davis, and Arthur Spector, through their production company Epic, a division of Vox Media Studios.

I had the honor to attend the virtual press day and obtain interviews with the cast and crew. 

Interview with André Holland (“Huey P. Newton”)

Courtesy: Apple TV+


Interview with Alessandro Nivola (“Bert Schneider”) & PJ Byrne (“Steve Blauner”)

Courtesy: Apple TV+

Interview with Tiffany Boone (“Gwen Fontaine”)

Courtesy: Apple TV+

Interview with Janine Sherman Barrois (Executive Producer/Showrunner) & Jim Hecht (Executive Producer/Writer)

Courtesy: Apple TV+

About Apple TV+’s “The Big Cigar”

Apple TV+ is available on the Apple TV app in over 100 countries and regions, on over 1 billion screens, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Apple Vision Pro, Mac, popular smart TVs from Samsung, LG, Sony, VIZIO, TCL and others, Roku and Amazon Fire TV devices, Chromecast with Google TV, PlayStation and Xbox gaming consoles, and at, for $9.99 per month with a seven-day free trial. For a limited time, customers who purchase and activate a new iPhone, iPad, Apple TV or Mac can enjoy three months of Apple TV+ for free.

For more information, visit and see the full list of supported devices.


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