Specials to address topical issues facing teenagers

Viacom subsidiary Paramount Stations Group has commissioned production of “The Teen Files,” a series of one-hour specials addressing topical issues facing teenagers.

Exec produced by Arnold Shapiro (“Scared Straight!”), the series will begin with “Smoking: Truth or Dare?” Hosted by Leeza Gibbons, it is scheduled to air May 21 on the 17 Paramount Stations Group stations and currently is being cleared by Paramount Domestic Television in other markets throughout the country.

The episode intends to give teens a graphic glimpse of the damage caused by smoking and will feature appearances by Boyz II Men, supermodel Christy Turlington, U.S. Secretary of Health & Human Resources Donna Shalala and actor Judd Hirsch.

The second installment of “The Teen Files,” scheduled to air later this year, will explore teen drinking.

Shapiro’s other production credits include “Rescue 911,” “Scared Silent: Exposing and Ending Child Abuse,” “Break the Silence: Kids Against Child Abuse” and “Victory Over Violence.”

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