Aug 27

The History of BET

Black Entertainment Television (BET), headquartered in Washington, D.C. and currently operates under the VIACOM umbrella.   With more than 90 million homes watching worldwide, it is the well-known station targeting African-American viewers.  It is also a leading provider of black American cultural and entertainment based programming, both of original creations, acquired properties and musical presentations.

After stepping down as a lobbyist for the cable industry, Freeport, Illinois native Robert L. Johnson decided to launch his own cable television network. Johnson would soon acquire a loan for $15,000, and earned a $500,000 investment from media executive John Malone to start the network.[3] The network, which was named Black Entertainment Television, launched on January 25, 1980.[4] Initially broadcasting for two hours a week as a block of programming on Nickelodeon (it would not be until 1983 that BET became a full-fledged channel), the network’s lineup consisted of music videos and reruns of popular black sitcoms.  (from Wikipedia)

BET has gained popularity with its’ vast black audience, but has faced a number of major African Americans critics such as syndicated columnist George Curry, cartoonist and television producer Aaron McGruder, movie director  and producer Spike Lee, and former Syracuse University professor Boyce Watkins. These critics and others denounced BET’s programming, claiming it promoted sexism and anti-intellectualism.

They also argued that showing rap and hip hop-oriented programming along with comedy programs either intentionally or inadvertently promoted anti-black stereotypes. BET founder Richard Johnson and Viacom executives claimed they were providing the programming the market demanded. In 2008 a number of prominent black ministers (“Enough is Enough”) publicly protested BET programming choices outside the network’s headquarters.

Enough is Enough supported a 2008 report “The Rap on Rap” by the Parents Television Council that argued that BET’s rap programming, which they believed contained gratuitous sexual, violent and profane content, was targeting children and teens.

The controversy continued in 2010, when BET co-founder Sheila Johnson said she is “ashamed” of what the network has become. “I don’t watch it. I suggest to my kids that they don’t watch it,” she said. “When we started BET, it was going to be the Ebony magazine on television. We had public affairs programming. We had news.

The criticism has not impacted the growth and acceptance of BET and the various shows and programs they have created.  In 2013, it is reported that 79.82% of households with television receive the BET network.  However, there is no information available as to what percentage of those households chose to get the network, or receive the network as part of a larger cable package.

According to the sales material, “BET provides contemporary entertainment that speaks to young Black adults from an authentic, unapologetic viewpoint of the Black experience. BET connects with its target audience in a way no other media outlet can providing hit music, entertainment and news programming that is reflective of their experiences.  Our outstanding mega-specials keep viewers regularly tuned in for the latest and greatest in Black entertainment.”

Mar 27

Ron Ross And Gucci Mane Are usually Reportedly Filming A Movie

Ross says the movie will be filmed in Atlanta.

Mar 26

Celebrity, producer-writer of ‘Orange Is The Brand new Black’ marry – Huron Everyday Tribune

Updated 12: 29 am, Monday, March 27, 2017

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. (AP) — An actress and producer-writer from “Orange Is The New Black” have married.

Celebrity Samira Wiley , who plays the character Poussey Washington on the Netflix show, and Lauren Morelli wedded Saturday in Palm Springs, where they were engaged. Publicist Scott Boute says both women wore dresses designed by Christian Siriano .

Wiley, 29, will also appear in the upcoming collection “The Handmaid’s Tale, ” in line with the 1985 novel by Canadian author Margaret Atwood that depicts New England under a totalitarian theocracy.

Morelli, 34, has worked as a writer, story editor and producer associated with “Orange Is The New Black, inch which depicts life inside a women’s prison, since 2014.

Mar 25

Watch the New Action-Packed Trailer for ‘Justice League’

The DC movie universe team gets ready for battle.

Mar 22

Orphan Black releases first look photos, new details from final season – (blog)

There are still a few months to go before Orphan Black returns for its fifth and final season, but Clone Club members are now getting a new glimpse at what’s in store for Sarah and her sestras.

BBC America released 10 new images from the series on Wednesday, along with new plot details warning that “walls are closing in” on Sarah when nearly all her sister clones and their allies are “brought to heel” by Rachel — and what makes it even more harrowing is that Sarah’s daughter, Kira, is among them.

“With the threat of Neolution having carte blanche access to clone biology, Sarah is desperate to gain control, but realizes she must change tactics to pursue a long game,” the plot description from the network continues. “Protecting both her families, and the host of clones she’s yet to meet, Sarah and those still fighting the fight will uncover the missing pieces of the insidious conspiracy – and finally learn the story behind their origin. Despite the great risk, the fight of her life will either set her and her sestras free, or see them meet their end…”

The photos below offer even more for fans to chew on. Cosima is with Delphine (Evelyne Brochu) in one, seemingly examining her torso for something. Alison looks like she’s back on stage (or perhaps behind a curtain of some sort) alongside Felix (Jordan Gavaris) and Donnie (Kristian Bruun). Rachel and Ira (Ari Millen) are together in another of the images, and Ferdinand (James Frain) is still lurking around, too.

But among all those usual faces (and Maslany’s many times over, as multiple clones — hi, Helena!), it looks like there’s a new one, too — who’s that woman meeting with Scott (Josh Vokey), Art (Kevin Hanchard), and Krystal?

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The Orphan Black crew will appear Thursday at a PaleyFest panel in Los Angeles, and new episodes of the show return June 10 at 10 p.m. ET on BBC America.

Mar 22

Porsha Williams Drops a Bombshell on Phaedra Parks

More drama.

Mar 20

‘Shots Fired’ isn’t the typical TV crime drama – Fort Worth Star Telegram

Most TV crime dramas are guilty of playing safe.

They follow a familiar formula: Open with a grisly murder, introduce suspects to our detectives, demonstrate a new forensics technique that will crack the case, make an arrest, close with some witty banter.

There are exceptions — such as ABC’s “American Crime” — but the majority cling to the routine. These shows are entertaining and hugely popular, but often so predictable that they become forgettable.

“Shots Fired,” which premieres at 7 p.m. Wednesday on Fox, isn’t playing safe. This is a show that climbs up on a soapbox. It aspires to make viewers uncomfortable. It wants to make everyone think.

“The premise, the inciting incident, is that a young man is shot and killed by a police officer,” says Helen Hunt, one of the cast members. “I wish it wasn’t something that we hear every night on the news.”

Racial tension within the community will soon broil over.

It will take 10 episodes for special prosecutor Preston Terry (played by Stephan James) and investigator Ashe Akino (Sanaa Lathan) to examine all sides of the case — and it’s going to get ugly in this small North Carolina town in the meantime.

Series co-creator Reggie Rock Bythewood has called the series “an autopsy of a town like Ferguson.”

Co-star Richard Dreyfuss says it’s “the most current show you’ll ever see.”

But there’s a twist to the premise: The officer is African-American and the dead suspect is white.

Series co-creator Gina Prince-Bythewood believes that by “flipping the narrative” in this way, the show might be able to help viewers think about these tragedies in a new light.

When Terry and Akino are sent by the Department of Justice to investigate, their case gets a lot of media attention and hands-on involvement from the governor (Hunt’s character).

They soon get wind of another police shooting in town. But this one, involving a black teen shot by a white sheriff’s deputy, has been suppressed by the local police.

The show will examine how these two cases are approached differently by the police, the media and the public.

In a letter to critics, the Bythewoods, who also are executive producers, reveal that they were inspired by the 2013 Trayvon Martin case.

“Our oldest son, who was 12 at the time, watched live courtroom footage,” they explain. “As the world and our son looked on, the jury found George Zimmerman not guilty (and) tears of anger and confusion filled our son’s eyes, as he slowly became to frame a different picture of America.

Pundits, politicians and the American public take sides in a contest that produces no winners.

Series co-creators Reggie Rock Bythewood and Gina Prince-Bythewood

“While we mourned the loss of our son’s innocence, the parents of Tamir Rice, Mike Brown, Trayvon Martin and too many others are forced to mourn the loss of their child’s life. Pundits, politicians and the American public take sides in a contest that produces no winners.”

That’s when the Bythewoods decided to change the conversation.

“What if we put Americans in other people’s shoes just for a minute?” they continue. “A sports announcer once said he aimed to give his listeners a view from every seat in the house. What if we created an event series that did just that?

“What if we looked at the policing of African-Americans, our broken criminal justice system and race relations from every seat in the house? What if we created a 10-hour film that asked the difficult questions and sparked real conversation and change?”

That’s a lot to ask from a TV show. But why not give it a try?

  • 7 p.m. Wednesday
  • KDFW/Channel 4

Mar 19

Musician from Tallahassee to Appear on BET Sunday – WTXL ABC 27

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) – A rising star in the world of Motown gospel is set to appear on BET, the Black Entertainment Television network.

Royce Lovett has been a professional musician since 2003, but he’s from Tallahassee originally. WTXL caught up with him at MusicMasters to learn more about his career, and how his roots in the Big Bend inspire his work.

Mar 17

Braxton Family Values Season 5 Episode 16 – ‘Tabloids, Rumors, and Repercussions’


On episode 16 Tamar faces tabloid rumors about her marriage, Towanda finally documents for divorce, and Toni gets grilled about her new love. Meanwhile, Traci confronts Tamar regarding her posts on social media.

full ep here> >

Mar 16

Traci Otey Blunt Named President associated with RLJ Entertainment’s Urban Movie Channel – Eurweb. com

traci otey blunt, rlj entertainment, urban movie channel

Traci Otey Blunt Named President of RLJ Entertainment’s Urban Movie Channel

*Robert L. Johnson, Chairman of RLJ Entertainment (NASDAQ: RLJE) today announced the scheduled appointment of Traci Otey Blunt since President of Urban Movie Route (UMC).

UMC could be the first premium subscription-based streaming provider created for African American and urban audiences that features quality urban content across all genres, including feature films, original series, stand-up comedy, documentaries, and other exclusive titles.

“I am excited to announce Traci’s appointment as UMC President. Two years ago, Traci joined the particular RLJ Entertainment management team as Executive Vice President for Corporate Marketing and Corporate Affairs and was assigned to launch and develop the company’s proprietary streaming provider Urban Movie Channel, ” said Johnson.

“Under Traci’s leadership and management, UMC has generated a strong business foundation to grow the subscriber base and distribute convincing content to its target audience. UMC provides attracted talented producers and authors from the African American creative community and it has acquired films and other content showcasing some of the most prominent Black actors plus actresses. I am confident that Traci and her team will make UMC a successful and valuable digital station for RLJ Entertainment, ” he concluded.

Traci Otey Blunt

Miguel Penella, RLJ Entertainment CEO stated, “Traci Otey Blunt has demonstrated an expertise of the digital entertainment market in a short period of time.

Her experience in creating profitable campaigns to reach African American and city audiences, coupled with her decisive results-oriented management style are an effective combination which will help UMC continue to expand. In addition to leading UMC, Traci will always serve as the EVP for Corporate Affairs leading RLJE’s corporate marketing communications and public affairs. ”

“I am pleased and excited to have the confidence of RLJE management and the opportunity to direct and grow UMC at this time, ” said Traci Otey Blunt. “My immediate strategic goals for UMC are to grow our subscriber foundation by creating a destination for the UMC audience to find compelling and primary content created by the most talented African American writers and producers.

UMC will create a business model where the often underemployed African American creative local community will find a place to showcase their work product and be compensated simply by subscribers who enjoy watching UMC entertainment.

We also want to further expand UMC’s electronic footprint by making UMC available on a lot more platforms and devices. Finally, I want to come up with an innovative way that digital content providers can be recognized plus rewarded by the industry and their peers for the outstanding creative content material they produce now and in the near future, ” she concluded.

The UMC team contains Angela Northington, SVP Content Purchases & General Manager; as well as Farah Noel, Manager, UMC Publicity and Corporate Affairs; and Lauren Spencer, UMC Digital Marketing Manager.

About Urban Movie Funnel (UMC)

Created by Robert L. Johnson, Chairman of RLJ Entertainment and founder of Dark Entertainment Television (BET), Urban Film Channel (UMC) is the first membership streaming service created for African American and urban audiences in North America which includes quality urban content and displays feature films, documentaries, original collection, stand-up comedy, and other exclusive content. UMC offers a free 7-day trial and thereafter is just $4. 99/month or $49. 99/year. Subscribers can access UMC from multiple gadgets (tablet, phone and laptop), upon Roku, Amazon Prime, Amazon Fireplace TV, iOS, and Apple TV to watch movies from today’s many recognizable talent available on demand plus commercial-free. For more information, please visit urbanmoviechannel. com .

About RLJ Entertainment:

RLJ Amusement, Inc. (NASDAQ: RLJE) is an enjoyment content distribution company in primarily North America, the United Kingdom, and Australia. RLJE’s titles are distributed in several formats including broadcast television (including satellite and cable), theatrical and non-theatrical, DVD, Blu-Ray, digital down load, and digital streaming.

With its popular OTT branded channels, Acorn TV (British TV) plus UMC (Urban Movie Channel), RLJE targets distinct, premium audiences and urban niche audiences. The company expands its proprietary digital channels through development, acquisition, and distribution associated with exclusive rights of program franchises and feature film content Through Acorn Media Enterprises, its UK growth arm, RLJE owns all rights to the hit UK mystery collection Foyle’s War and is developing brand new programs. RLJE owns 64% associated with Agatha Christie Limited, which manages the intellectual property and posting rights to some of the greatest works of mystery fiction, including tales of the iconic sleuths Miss Marple and Poirot.

For more info, please visit RLJEntertainment. possuindo , Acorn. TELEVISION , and UrbanMovieChannel. com .

Farah Noel
[email protected]

Mar 13

University or college of Richmond announces commencement audio speakers – Richmond. com

The University associated with Richmond has announced the audio speakers who will address graduates during this year�™s commencement weekend May 6-7.

Entrepreneur Sheila Johnson, who is the particular founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts and a founding partner of Black Entertainment Tv, will deliver the main commencement talk during the ceremony at 2 l. m., May 7 in the Robins Center.

Robert Reynolds, principal at Reynolds Development, will provide the commencement address for the MBA ceremony at 11: 30 the. m. May 6 in Queally Hall. Donald Lemons, the chief proper rights of the Supreme Court of Va, will address graduates of the College of Law at 2 p. m. May 6 in the Robins Center.

The School of Professional and Ongoing Studies will hold commencement at 9 a. m., May 6 in the Robins Center, with speakers to be announced in April.

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