[01/11/06 - 12:00 AM]
Raven-Symone, Aisha Tyler and Jason Lewis Star in the Lifetime Original Movie 'For One Night' About a Teenager's Courageous Effort to Integrate Her High School Prom, Airing Monday, February 6

[via press release from Lifetime]

Raven-Symone, Aisha Tyler and Jason Lewis Star in the Lifetime Original Movie 'For One Night' About A Teenager's Courageous Effort to Integrate Her High School Prom, Airing Monday, February 6

Inspired By a True Story

PASADENA, Calif., Jan. 11 - Raven-Symone ("That's So Raven," "The Cheetah Girls"), Aisha Tyler ("Ghost Whisperer," "Friends") and Jason Lewis ("Sex in the City") star in the Lifetime Original Movie "For One Night," a moving drama inspired by a true story about a 12th grader who risks her social and academic standing to end her high school's long tradition of racially segregated proms. Set in present day, the town of Mercier, Louisiana has come a long way since its past, where segregated proms are accepted as a fact of life by both black and white students. When a gifted and popular senior (Raven-Symone) innocently suggests changing the policy, it re-ignites the town's smoldering racial tensions. The teenager gets some unexpected support from a New Orleans journalist (Aisha Tyler), who has her own complex relationship to Mercier. "For One Night" premieres Monday, February 6 at 9 PM (ET/PT) on Lifetime Television.

High School Senior Brianna McCallister (Symone) is smart, pretty and popular. It's no wonder she's chairperson of the black prom committee -- one of the two prom committees at her school. Although Mercier High is an integrated campus where black and white kids mix socially, its longstanding tradition of segregated proms has remained unchallenged for decades. When Brianna innocently suggests black and white seniors put on a single dance, this sparks controversy among the school's parents, who still harbor deeply ingrained prejudices. After the school principal issues a veiled threat to Brianna -- to drop the single prom idea -- Brianna must decide whether or not to stand up for what she knows is right, even if it means possibly ruining prom night for everyone.

Brianna's plight piques the interest of 32-year-old Desiree Howard (Tyler), a Mercier native who left to become a newspaper reporter in New Orleans. Learning of the prom debate during a rare trip home, she writes an expose that thrusts the town's institutionalized racism into the spotlight. But Desiree's visit to the town reveals something else: there is still chemistry between her and her old flame Mark Manning (Lewis), now the school's assistant principal.

"What I found fascinating about this story is that these are ordinary people who started out with no social agenda," said Executive Producer Kyle Bowser. "They are not crusaders, but are people who made a very principled choice that ended up being a shot heard around the world. From my point of view, this is not really a story about race. It is about two women who, after an initial period of mistrust, link arms to conquer adversity."

In discussing the film, 20-year-old actress-singer Raven-Symone noted that like many young people today, Mercier students of all races think nothing of socializing together while the town's older generation has a much harder time letting go of its bigotry. "In the movie, the mature people sense the underlying racism but the kids really don't because it's present day. Everyone listens to the same music ... they party together ... they're friends. But the parents are the ones that are kind of keeping this blanket of racism over the town and are very set in their ways."

Aisha Tyler, who plays journalist Desiree Howard, added "This is an important story to tell because since the '60s we've all gotten a little complacent about race relations in this country. We think we've done the work and we're finished. I think it's important to show that these things are still going on and to really confront people's preconceptions and their comfort with the way things are."

As part of the Network's award-winning public education and advocacy campaign, "Our Lifetime Commitment," Lifetime is joining with leading non-profits; including Girls Inc., the Martin Luther King Foundation, Youth Service America and other organizations to create an educational outreach initiative -- on-air, online and in the community -- to highlight themes presented in the movie of transcending racial barriers and encouraging students to reach for their dreams by becoming leaders in their schools. Immediately following the film's premiere, Lifetime will air an original Public Service Announcement (PSA) with Raven-Symone to promote tolerance and encourage viewers to make a difference in their communities. Lifetime's educational viewers' guide will be available at lifetimetv.com.

"For One Night" is produced by von Zerneck/Sertner Films in association with Res Ipsa Media, Inc. for Lifetime Television. Robert M. Sertner, Frank von Zerneck (Lifetime's "Gracie's Choice" and "We Were the Mulvaneys") and Kyle Bowser ("For Your Love," "Midnight Mac") serve as executive producers. Ernest Dickerson ("ER," "Strange Justice") directs from a teleplay written by Denitria Harris-Lawrence ("Any Day Now").

LIFETIME is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, LIFETIME is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and their families. LIFETIME Television, Lifetime Movie Network, Lifetime Real Women, Lifetime Home Entertainment and Lifetime Online are part of LIFETIME Entertainment Services, a 50/50 joint venture of The Hearst Corporation and The Walt Disney Company.

* Photography is available at http://www.lifetimepress.com

SOURCE Lifetime Television
Web Site: http://www.lifetimetv.com

  [january 2006]  

· ER (NBC)

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