The one-hour special, which is titled “John Lewis: Celebrating a Hero,” will be co-hosted by Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry, Gayle King and Brad Pitt, and will air Aug. 4 on CBS and across several other ViacomCBS brands (namely OWN, BET, MTV and Smithsonian).
“John Lewis: Celebrating a Hero” will consist of musical performances, interviews, and inspirational conversations about Lewis’ life and legacy. It is being produced by Jesse Collins Entertainment in partnership with CBS Entertainment and CBS News. News of the special comes exactly two weeks after his death at the age of 80.
“John Lewis was an extraordinary man,” said Winfrey. “A man of great vision who lived a life with the purpose of making sure America lived out its ideals.”
“This is a celebration of the ‘boy from Troy,’” added Perry. “A forefather of the civil rights movement, who would live to see his contributions for equality result in witnessing the swearing in of the first Black United States president.”
The special has also set a stellar lineup of performers including Yolanda Adams, Jon Batiste, Common, Jennifer Hudson, John Legend, Trevor Noah, Billy Porter and Wynonna.
“Congressman Lewis was one of the most prominent and forceful voices for change in this country. Losing that voice now is so difficult as the country confronts structural racism. But John Lewis gave us the will and the way to continue his work,” said Susan Zirinsky, president and senior executive producer of CBS News. “This special reminds us the journey will not be easy, and there’s no turning back.”