The second season of VICE documentary series Black Market, presented by late actor Michael K Williams, had almost completed production prior to his death.
The show aired its first run of episodes in the United States back in 2016, which saw Williams meet numerous people involved in illicit trade and discover the circumstances which led them there.
Black Market with Michael K Williams found a UK broadcaster in 2018 in Channel 4, and remains available to watch online via free streaming service, All 4.
A second season was announced in February of this year as part of a fresh slate of docuseries for VICE, with Williams’ aiming to examine the conditions black markets are born out of and the cultural factors that make them difficult to shut down.
In a statement released at the time, Williams said: “After a busy period of back-to-back projects, I’m incredibly excited to rejoin my Vice family in taking a deeper dive behind telling the narratives of these global communities.”
After news of his death broke yesterday, Variety has reported that “much of” the work on Black Market season two had already been done and that VICE executives will meet soon to decide on a release strategy.
Vice Media Group said in a statement: “We are truly saddened by the sudden passing of Michael K. Williams, a true icon and a longtime friend of our Vice family.
“Michael was a cultural visionary and a pillar of the community in his home, and ours – Brooklyn. The impact of this loss will be felt close to home and beyond for many years to come. Our deepest condolences go out to his family and loved ones.”
Black Market with Michael K Williams has been described as The Wire star’s “most personal project”, with the acclaimed actor opening up on how the show moved him in a 2017 interview with IndieWire’s TURN IT ON podcast.
“Black Market definitely left an emotional void in me,” he said. “I met so many bright spirits and so many broken people, so many people I wish I had the resources to help them on their quest. I struggled with that for a long while after we wrapped that show.”
Williams added: “I had no clue of what this world was. I come from knowing my lines and the perfect scene, and none of those tools worked in the Black Market world. I had to let go of all of that and be Mike. Mike is not the most educated person in the world. When I let that go, that fear of looking ignorant in this world, I got to learn.”