×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

BET Greenlights 4 Pilots, Nabs ‘Negroes’ Mini (EXCLUSIVE)

Slate includes first unscripted project from 'Game' producers Mara and Salim Akil

The duo behind BET’s “The Game” and “Being Mary Jane” is shepherding another project for the cabler, this time an unscripted series involving mind and body makeovers of everyday people.

“Back to Me with Jeanette Jenkins” one of four unscripted pilots recently greenlit by BET original programming prexy Loretha Jones. The orders are another sign of BET’s increased investment in original series programming as it faces more competition for African-American viewers.

The makeover show, from Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil (pictured above), sends celeb trainer Jenkins to work with everyday people, selected from homevid submissions. The Akils, Jenkins and Lisa Haese (“The Biggest Loser”) exec produce.

“Hip-Hop Sisters” is a docu-drama that follows MC Lyte, Yo Yo  and four other femme rappers (Lady of Rage, Smooth, Monie Love and Lil Mama) as they attempt to relaunch their careers. MC Lyte and Lemmuel Plummer exec produce.

“Gone Gospel” is a singing competition hosted by Kirk Franklin that sends former hitmakers to “Gospel Boot Camp” in an effort to revive their careers. Participants will be mentored by prominent gospel artists as they compete to write an inspirational anthem. Franklin exec produces with Marilyn Gill, producer of BET’s long-running “Sunday Best” gospel series.

“Internal Affairs” is a true-crime vehicle focusing on cops tasked with investigating their own. Project hails from Fox Television Studios and exec producer Ted Haimes.

Separately, BET has also acquired the U.S. telecast rights to a miniseries based on the novel “The Book of Negroes,” by Laurence Hill (title was published in the U.S. as “Someone Knows My Name”). Entertainment One, Conquering Lion Pictures and Out of Africa Entertainmnet are producing the project, which is an official Canadian-South African co-production for the CBC and BET.

Miniseries tells the story of a woman’s escape from slavery in the Revolutionary War period. Clement Virgo (“The Wire”) has penned the miniseries and will direct, with production skedded to begin in the fall.

BET has been on a big push to enhance its original programming as it faces increasing competition for its target demos from OWN, TV One and startup digital network Bounce TV. In the midst of the upfront advertising selling season, BET has been touting its advantage over all networks, broadcast and cable, in reaching black women in the 18-49 demo in primetime.

More TV

  • beIN Orders First Turkish Original Drama

    beIN Orders First Turkish Original Drama 'The Choice'

    Miramax owner beIN Media is pushing into the competitive Turkish drama market. The beIN-owned Turkish pay-TV operator Digiturk has commissioned production company Ay Yapim to make drama series “The Choice” for its streaming platform, beIN Connect, in Turkey. “The Choice” marks the first original series for Digiturk since sports and entertainment group beIN Media acquired the [...]

  • Tekashi 6ix9ine Docuseries Coming From Showtime

    Tekashi 6ix9ine Docuseries Coming From Showtime and Rolling Stone

    Showtime Documentary Films today announced a new limited docuseries profiling controversial rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine. Titled “SuperVillain” and inspired by the Rolling Stone feature written by Stephen Witt, the three-part series will trace how a New York City deli clerk named Daniel Hernandez became superstar rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine — who racked up 2.6 billion streams and [...]

  • TV Ratings: 'The Masked Singer,' NBC's

    TV Ratings: 'The Masked Singer,' NBC's 'Chicago' Shows Tick Up

    One performer’s routine on “The Masked Singer” last night might have been a little too bare bones for the judges, however, the show’s ratings showed a lot more flesh. The Fox singing competition show ticked up from last week among adults 18-49 to a 2.1 rating, and gained around 100,000 total viewers to end up [...]

  • Megyn Kelly

    Megyn Kelly Makes Meandering Comeback Bid on Fox News (Column)

    Megyn Kelly made the first steps toward a TV comeback on Wednesday night, appearing on Fox News, the network that brought her to prominence, to decry NBC, the network from which she parted ways last year. It was a booking that had everything that has made Kelly a compelling figure for years — a sense [...]

  • Kane Brown CMT Artists of the

    Kane Brown Pays Tribute to Late Drummer Kenny Dixon in Tearful 'CMT Artists' Speech

    Country star Kane Brown, unabashedly distraught over the death of his touring drummer Kenny Dixon just four days earlier in a car accident, dedicated his “CMT Artists of the Year” award to Dixon in a heart-rending appearance on the telecast Wednesday night. Brown ceded the performance slot he would have been allowed to friend Chris [...]

  • CBS HEADQUARTERS

    CBS-Viacom Merger Details Revealed, Shares to Trade on Nasdaq

    Negotiations between CBS and Viacom went down to the wire on the day the long-gestating transaction was finally sealed on Aug. 13. CBS Corp. and Viacom revealed the timeline of the merger talks in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Thursday that runs more than 650 pages. Also Thursday, CBS and Viacom said the shares [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content