Candice Carty-Williams’ UK rap drama Champion is truly authentic

THE FACE Podcast: The South London author tells us about her thrilling new TV show.

When Candice Carty-Williams’ debut novel Queenie was published in 2019, it was met with widespread critical acclaim. She collected the trophy for Book of the Year at the 2020 British Book Awards and, the following year, it was announced that Channel 4 had commissioned Queenie for a television drama. In 2021, Carty-Williams revealed she was also writing a new TV show called Champion, billed as a love letter to Black British music.

Champion, which hit screens on 1st July, tells the story of the rapper Bosco Champion, who is eager to revive his career after a stint in prison. The show also explores complex family dynamics and the exploitative nature of the music industry, all the while celebrating the culture which Carty-Williams holds close to her heart. The author-screenwriter enlisted musicians such as Ray BLK (who also stars in the show) and Ghetts as well as music journalist Hattie Collins to help her create an authentic soundtrack of original music.

Carty-Williams joins THE FACE’s Editor and host Matthew Whitehouse, as well as Features Editor Olive Pometsey and Music Director Davy Reed, to discuss the process of casting Champion, the challenge of creating original music, the industry’s lack of mental health support, the timeless aesthetic of So Solid Crew and the future of Black British TV. Oh, and we also reminisce on that time she interviewed Adele for THE FACE.


HOST Matthew Whitehouse EXECUTIVE EDITOR Davy Reed PRODUCER EDITOR Daniel Lopez DIGITAL DIRECTOR Brooke McCord MUSIC Louis Culture

Champion continues Saturday 9:15pm on BBC One, with all episodes available now on BBC iPlayer.

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