‘Wu-Tang: An American Saga’ Cast Members on Show’s Impact: ‘Showcases the Power and Beauty of Black Culture’

TJ Atoms, Siddiq Saunderson and Marcus Callender from the acclaimed Hulu series share what fans can expect in the final season


Wu-Tang: An American Saga cast members are reflecting on the historic show in its final run.

Over the course of three seasons, the Hulu series documents the real-life rise of the Wu-Tang Clan. While members of the group were heavily involved in the creation of the show, including RZA as co-creator and executive producer and Method Man also serving as an executive producer, the cast of the show was responsible for telling their story on the small screen.

A few actors from the cast stopped by PEOPLE publisher Dotdash Meredith to talk about their connection to the hip-hop group, the final season and some of their favorite memories on set.

For TJ Atoms, 27, playing Ol’ Dirty Bastard in the show was a dream come true. “When I was in Philly, I was actually in a group called The Bakery Boys, and we modeled everything after the Wu-Tang,” he said, adding that their logo and the beats they rapped over were all inspired by the group. “To me, it was a full manifestation.”

Siddiq Saunderson, 26, portrayed Ghostface Killah, and Marcus Callender, 32, depicted Power from Wu-Tang. Even though they were fans of the iconic group as a whole, the actors both approached their roles by thinking of each member of the group as a character.

I’m playing the person, but I approached it just like I would approach any other role because all my other roles are also people,” Saunderson said. “As soon as I put the character on, it becomes a person for the audience. So I definitely learned a lot more about the history and just what they meant to the culture.”

Callender added: “I like the word character because I feel like all of them are characters. It’s like, you got this group of all these individuals who make up this ultimate group and each person has something real strong that they contribute, whether they’re a rapper or not.”

The biopic series centers on the formation of the Wu-Tang Clan and the release of their work, including their 1993 debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). As fans take in the last season, Saunderson notes that they can expect to see more of the group’s early history unfold and their unique mark on the music industry brought to life.

“We just use imagination in a way that I feel really showcases the power and the beauty of Black culture and Black art,” said Saunderson. “We, as Black people, are so, just, beyond our times. We are the past, present and future.”

To bring authenticity to the story of the Staten Island natives, the cast underwent their own bonding experience with each other, just like the Wu-Tang members in real life. According to Callender, season two is when the actors all started to gel on set together.

“I think it’s episode six where you see RZA breaking down the beat for ‘Protect Ya Neck,'” Callender said. “At the end, during the credits, you see us going back and forth and everybody doing their verses. That wasn’t scripted. That was something that happened really organically because the magic was just crazy in the room.”

Even though the show is coming to an end, the life and legacy of the Wu-Tang Clan will continue to live on — in and outside of the music industry.

“We’re doing it now in 2023 and it’s still imaginative and it’s still refreshing and it’s still a new sound,” Saunderson said. “And I believe that now that our show is a very small piece in the Picasso of Wu-Tang, the art that is Wu-Tang, that’s going to last forever.”

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