Oprah Winfrey is celebrating Black fatherhood this Father’s Day through a special she co-hosted with actor Sterling K. Brown on her OWN network, Honoring Our Kings, Celebrating Black Fatherhood.
The series celebrates the millions of present Black fathers across the globe through conversations with some celebrity dads, including John Legend, Kevin Hart, D.L. Hughley, Deon Cole, Tony Gonzalez, and Dwyane Wade..
“I had a father who took responsibility for me, even though he knew I could have been somebody else’s child,” Winfrey told People.
The special is something Winfrey had wanted to do for some time to help break the narrative and stigma that have plagued Black fathers for decades.
“I had this idea for several years. I wanted to elevate, lift up, and show the other side of the narrative that we always hear about Black fathers not participating in their kids’ lives and Black fathers not being there,” Winfrey told Entertainment Tonight.
The renowned talk show host and philanthropist continued to praise her father for helping to shape her life in all the right ways.
“I am the product of a Black father. Had my father not stepped in and taken responsibility for me, I certainly would not be sitting here talking to you, or have the life that I have,” she continued. “So I wanted the rest of the world to see that, to know that, to hear it, to feel it and to have Black fathers validated.”
She recalled her parents’ history and how her father rose to the occasion.
“My mother and father never married,” she said. “They had sex one time. He gets a letter after I’m born saying, ‘Send money. You have a daughter.’ And the reason he did, he said, is because it could have been him. And the responsibility that he took for me, not just a responsibility but care and love and direction and support as a young teenage girl, is the thing that made the difference in me being who I am now or somebody you would have never, ever heard of.”
She tapped Brown who was more than excited to work with Winfrey. But filming the special proved to be an emotional journey for the two hosts.
“Sterling cried three times, I cried four or five times just in the taping of the special… I felt so proud of these men,” Winfrey said.
Honoring Our Kings, Celebrating Black Fatherhood premiered on OWN on Tuesday night.