The age-old narrative that several women can’t reign simultaneously in any sphere is being challenged by the upcoming reality show Boss in the City.
The Pixeledge Studios production will star dancer-cum-artist Queen Nikki, dancers The Swat Twinz, Sara Bendii and Unruly Panda, Toronto-based model Princess and upcoming artists Leci from New York and Krysie.
Show conceptualizer and executive producer Bossy, who requested to only be referred to by that name, said the project was spawned by her ventures as a brand strategist and artist manager.
“A lot of times women feel like they need to have a man in the room for their voice to be heard because we are taught that we have to use our sexuality to make it to the top,” Bossy told BUZZ.
“I really wanted to show some women who have been through different instances whether it’s sexual harassment, whether they’ve been told they’re not good enough, whether they’ve been told they’re too dark and have to bleach their skin, that you can actually make it without lowering your standards… We have a group of women together that are trying to make their way whether they’re an entertainer, a dancer, an artist, whether they own a business, and they’re all fighting to get to the top so that’s what the show is about.”
The trailer has attracted more than 30,000 views since its premiere on Queen Nikki’s Instagram page on Friday. Beyond the dominant theme of ambition, the clip also captures romance and conflict, the latter heightening during a drink-throwing brawl between Queen Nikki and Unruly Panda.
Several social media users have likened the scene to a scripted sequence which could easily appear on the popular reality show franchise Love & Hip Hop. Bossy, however, said the show has its own creative direction which is independent of fabricated drama.
“Love & Hip Hop has definitely set the standard in terms of entertainment but we also embrace the idea of having local talent in the country that are able to showcase their talent inside of the island,” she said.
“I wouldn’t say that the show is made up. Yes, you are going to have some things that are scripted. For example, I will say to the ladies ‘You have to plan an event’ so they might know that they’re going to a restaurant but they don’t know what’s going to happen there so the scenes are natural…
“It’s really about women empowerment and women sticking together. Of course you’re gonna make enemies along the way but at the end of the day we are all women and that’s the one thing that ties us together.”
Men also form part of the show, primarily upcoming artist Wellmaxx Sparta and guest deejay Laa Lee.
In choosing the cast, Bossy contacted creatives she knew personally and her connections recommended the rest. Queen Nikki was a late addition which proved fruitful.
“I feel like Nickeisha is underestimated,” said Bossy. “She’s very smart and knows how to win over an audience so that’s the reason why I reached out to her and I’d say that once she came on to the show it brought a whole new set of eyes.”
She believes Unruly Panda will be the show’s breakout star.
“She’s able to go toe-to-toe with Nikki and I feel like she’s going to be the one to watch because she’s not afraid of anyone and she really does have some humorous moments throughout the season.”
So what makes these women bosses?
“They all have to be in control of their career or try their best to be so they don’t have the privilege to just sit down. They always have to be thinking of ways to hustle… That’s really what being a boss is about; being able to balance your career, family, motherhood and relationships.”
Bossy is currently shopping for a network to broadcast the show in October. The first season will host 13 episodes and a casting call is already in place to diversify the other seasons.
Though its focus is on the life of the hustling woman, Bossy said the show is for everyone.
“The target audience would be about 18 to 35 but at the same time I feel like it’s really going to be something that brings everybody together. People that have watched the trailer have found it humorous and there’s also some highs and lows because it’s not always going to be a smooth ride. The whole point of having a low moment is to try to get back on top and be the boss.”