Cedric the Entertainer talks race in "The Neighborhood"

Cedric the Entertainer on "The Neighborhood"

Cedric the Entertainer has been making audiences laugh for more than 30 years. Now he's starring in the new CBS show, "The Neighborhood," a comedy that focuses on what happens when a white family moves into a predominantly black neighborhood.

"Like when you get the white neighbors in, this is the thing we know. Like, we know that your streets – the potholes are going to get fixed. White people will call the city on you. Like black people just tell you, 'There's a pothole down there. Don't turn on that street,'" Cedric the Entertainer said to laughter Friday on "CBS This Morning."

Cedric the Entertainer   CBS News

Known as one of "The Original Kings of Comedy," as Eddie in the "Barbershop" movie franchise, and for his hit TV series, "The Soul Man," the actor said the script is loosely based off the life of the show's creator, Jim Reynolds.

"So he moved into a predominantly black neighborhood, and so when I got the script, it was mainly from his perspective. And then I was like, you know, okay. That's not how the black people would act. You know?" Cedric said, laughing.

Cedric plays patriarch Calvin Butler who is wary of the new neighbors, but as a father of three himself, he said he's more "lenient" as a father.

"I do like to kind of set the rules. We do want our kids to be like, you know, great citizens and mannerable kind of kids to everybody else. But our kids can do, you know, they live in a new society. They can do whatever they want," Cedric said.

The comedian is also traveling and taking his routines on the road, from Little Rock to Chicago to Portland.

"For me, I mean, it keeps you like on the pulse of what's going on in society. Like when you actually go to these cities and you perform for people and the live audience comes out, you know, that kind of gets you out of the bubble of being just in Hollywood," he said. "You're able to, you know, to walk the streets, get the feel of what's really going on in the culture all around."

"The Neighborhood" premieres Monday at 8/7c on CBS.