BET has stars in its eyes

Cabler preems 8 new shows

BET Networks is keen to present itself as the King Kong of cablers. As it unveiled a slate of original programming at its upfront for the upcoming season, entertainment prexy Reginald Hudlin promised advertisers to turn the network from “a beast into a monster.”

Eight original shows will preem on the channel in the fall, including several that go behind the scenes in the lives of celebrities or up-and-coming stars.

“Next Level: Vince Young” follows the NFL rookie-to-be as he prepares for the football season; “Star Time Keyshia Cole” charts the public and private successes of the young thrush; and, perhaps most surprising, “DMX: Soul of a Man” pledges to reveal a caring and concerned side to the hardcore rapper that some never knew existed.

Other offerings on the slate include latenight passionfest “Black Book Diaries”; a docu on the history of black gangsters, “American Gangster”; a look at the world of gadgets and gizmos, “Hotwyred”; entertainment news skein “The Black Carpet”; and a slot dedicated to Ultimate Fighting, “Iron Ring.”

Cabler also announced that DJ Rocsi and Atlanta-based personality Terrence would become co-hosts of “106 and Park: BET Top 10 Live,” BET’s flagship musicvideo show.