Period Dramas for Black History Month

It is my pleasure to present this post on period dramas for Black History Month! This post lists films featuring Black characters (main, recurring, and minor) in biographical (up to the year 1970), fictional (but based on real events or issues), and ‘fantasy’ (completely fictional) period dramas.

Biographical Dramas

  • 12 Years a Slave (2013 – Movie)
  • 42 (2013 – Movie)
  • Amistad (1997 – Movie)
  • Angelo (2018 – Movie)
  • Apple TV+’s The Banker (2020 – TV Movie)
  • Belle (2013 – Movie)
  • The Birth of a Nation (2016 – Movie)
  • Bolden (2019 – Movie)
  • Chocolat (2016 – Movie)
  • Emperor (2020 – Movie)
  • Freedom (2014 – Movie)
  • Green Book (2018 – Movie)
  • Harriet (2019 – Movie)
  • Hidden Figures (2016 – Movie)
  • Hoodlum (1997 – Movie)
  • Jane and Emma (2018 – Movie)
  • The Josephine Baker Story (1991 – Movie)
  • Netflix’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (2020 – TV Movie)
  • Marshall (2017 – Movie)
  • Race (2016 – Movie)
  • Respect (2021 – Movie)
  • The Rosa Parks Story (2002 – Movie)
  • Seacole (2021? – Movie)
  • Netflix’s Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C. J. Walker (2020 – TV Movie)
  • A United Kingdom (2016 – Movie)
  • The United States vs. Billie Holiday (2021 – Movie)

Fictional Historical Dramas

  • ITV’s The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco (2018 – TV Series)
  • CBC’s Book of Negroes (2015 – TV Series)
  • BBC One’s Call the Midwife S7-Present (2012 – TV Series)
  • BBC’s Dancing on the Edge (2013 – TV Miniseries)
  • Caracol Television’s La Esclava Blanca (2016 – TV Series)
  • Fences (2016 – Movie)
  • CBC’s Frankie Drake Mysteries (2017 – TV Series)
  • Netflix’s Girls from Ipanema (2019 – TV Series)
  • Hairspray (2007 – Movie)
  • The Help (2011 – Movie)
  • CBBC’s Hetty Feather (2015 – TV Series)
  • Netflix’s Hollywood (2020 – TV Miniseries)
  • CBBC’s Leonardo (2011 – TV Series)
  • BBC’s The Long Song (2018 – TV Series)
  • Mama Flora’s Family (1998 – TV Miniseries)
  • BBC’s Les Miserables (2018 – TV Series)
  • Motherless Brooklyn (2019 – Movie)
  • Mudbound (2017 – Movie)
  • Ordeal By Innocence (2018 – TV Miniseries)
  • Palm Trees in the Snow (2015 – Movie)
  • Queen (1993 – TV Minseries)
  • ABC’s Roots (1977 – TV Miniseries)
  • ABC’s Roots: The Next Generations (1979 – TV Miniseries)
  • ABC’s Roots: The Gift (1988 – TV Movie)
  • History Channel’s Roots (2016 – TV Miniseries)
  • The Secret Life of Bees (2008 – Movie)
  • Small Axe (2020 – TV Series)
  • Small Island (2009 – TV Miniseries)
  • Amazon Prime’s Sylvie’s Love (2020 – TV Movie)
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God (2005 – TV Movie)
  • Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1987 – Movie)
  • WGN’s Underground (2016 – TV Series)
  • Where Hands Touch (2018 – Movie)

Fantasy Period Dramas

  • Netflix’s Bridgerton S1 (2020 – TV Series)
  • NBC’s Dracula (2013 – TV Series)
  • Netflix’s Jingle Jangle (2020 – TV Movie)
  • Jumanji: The Next Level (2019 – Movie)
  • HBO’s Lovecraft Country (2020 – TV Series)
  • BBC’s The Musketeers (2014 – TV Series)
  • BBC’s Robin Hood S3 (2009 – TV Series)
  • ITV’s Sanditon (2019 – TV Series)
  • ABC’s Still Star-Crossed (2017 – TV Series)
  • NBC’s Timeless (2016 – TV Series)
  • ITV’s Timewasters (2017 – TV Series)
  • Wuthering Heights (2011 – Movie)
  • Channel 4’s Year of the Rabbit (2019 – TV Series)

Period Dramas with Minor Black Characters

  • Amazing Grace (2006 – Movie)
  • Chicago (2002 – Movie)
  • Dickensian (2015 – TV Series)
  • Apple TV’s Dickinson (2019 – TV Series)
  • ITV’s Downton Abbey S4 (2010 – TV Series)
  • Netflix’s Enola Holmes (2020 – TV Movie)
  • ITV’s Grantchester S4-5 (2014 – TV Series)
  • ITV’s The Halcyon (2017 – TV Series)
  • Hulu’s Harlots (2017 – TV Series)
  • The Last Full Measure (2019 – Movie)
  • Live By Night (2016 – Movie)
  • Murder on the Orient Express (2017 – Movie)
  • CBC’s Murdoch Mysteries S9-Present (2008 – TV Series)
  • BBC’s Oliver Twist (2007 – TV Series)
  • Ophelia (2018 – Movie)
  • Starz’s Outlander S4-5 (2014 – TV Series)
  • BBC’s Peaky Blinders (2013 – TV Series)
  • Pearl Harbor (2001 – Movie)
  • Epix’s Pennyworth (2019 – TV Series)
  • Personal History of David Copperfield (2019 – Movie)
  • Son of the South (2020 – Movie)
  • The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020 – Movie)
  • Vanity Fair (2004 – Movie)
  • ITV’s Vanity Fair (2018 – TV Series)
  • ITV’s Victoria S2 Christmas Special (2016 – TV Series)
  • BBC One’s World on Fire S1 (2019 – TV series)

Let me know which films I’ve missed that should be added to these lists. Thank you! 🙂