eclectic mix of programming marks BET�s fall 2006 lineup
BEt�s Got Beef, an NFL Franchise Player, Gangsters and New Awards Show on Tap for Fall
New BET �J� Network Debuts First Reality Series COMMITTED: THE CHRISTIES in October
PASADENA, CA (July 11, 2006) � BET is punctuating its fall season lineup with an eclectic mix of programming that revolves around big personalities and engaging themes highlighting music, sports, conflict and crime among them. All of these elements are explored in some cases, and celebrated in others, through four new original programs debuting on BET this fall � Next Level: Vince Young; Beef: The Series; American Gangster; and the inaugural BET Hip Hop Awards. Also debuting on BET�s adult-focused companion channel BET �J� is a new reality show based on the life of NBA star Doug Christie and his wife Jackie entitled COMMITTED: THE CHRISTES.
The new programming slate was revealed by BET Chairman and CEO Debra lee and BET President of Entertainment Reginald Hudlin who made the announcement Tuesday at the summer TCA press tour held at the Ritz-Carlton Huntington Hotel & Spa Tuesday for the nation�s television critics.
�All of these shows are very exciting individually,� said Hudlin. �But when you look at them as a group, you see a wide range of subject matter and tone which represents the breadth and depth of the new BET programming direction.�
BET�s blockbuster fall season schedule will include the following original series and specials:
NEXT LEVEL: VINCE YOUNG
From BET and producer Brendon J. Carter OF Bright Creations comes another exciting reality series, NEXT LEVEL: VINCE YOUNG. This six-part series, which debuts in October, will chronicle former Texas quarterback Vince Young�s journey from the collegiate to the pro ranks. Young, who led the Longhorns to the 2006 National Championship in a dramatic come-from-behind victory over defending champs USC, was the Number 3 overall draft pick by the Tennessee Titans.
BET will get up-close-and-personal with the Houston, Texas native as he attempts to balance his on and off-field responsibilities, be a role model to underprivileged youth and deal with his newly-found fame and fortune. There will also be riveting footage of the quarterback in action.
Next Level: Vince Young premieres on Wednesday, October 4.
BEEF: THE SERIES
Some folks are cutting back on the red meat, but BET and producer Quincy Jones III (QDIII) are serving up some �beef� that you won�t want to miss. BEEF: THE SERIES explores the conflicts that have captivated an American public with an insatiable hunger for juicy celebrity controversy. So, whether it�s Kobe vs. Shaq, rappers vs. Oprah or Snoop vs. Suge, it will all be a part of this six-part series starting in October.
Some of the episodes include: teen rappers Lil Romeo vs. Bow Wow; Houston rappers Paul Wall vs. Chamillionaire; Dave Chappelle vs. Comedy Central; Kobe vs. Shaq; Jay Z vs. R Kelly; The Game vs. Bigfase 100; Jackie O vs. Foxy Brown; and many others.
BEEF: THE SERIES premieres on Wednesday, October 4.
COMMITTED: THE CHRISTIES
In October, BET�s adult-focused companion channel BET �J� will launch a new reality show based on the life of NBA star Doug Christie and his wife Jackie entitled CHRISTIES COMMITTED. Often misunderstood, their relationship is one that will keep viewers mystified, entertained and in awe. As married couples go, there are perhaps none who live, love and manage life in the pro sports limelight like Doug and Jackie Christie.
BET programming consultant and pop culture specialist Nelson George, along with Frank Sinton of Asylum Entertainment and Mark Rowland, have joined forces with BET to produce an in-depth look at African-American mobsters and criminals in AMERICAN GANGSTER, a six-part series premiering in November.
AMERICAN GANGSTER will examine, but not glorify, the lives and crimes of several nefarious criminals including: Leroy �Nicky� Barnes, �Freeway Ricky� Ross, The Chambers Brothers and Stanley �Tookie� Williams through the use of photographs, archival footage and probing interviews.
The show also reveals the lasting impact these criminals and their crimes had on their communities, and explores the moral implications of Black-on-Black crime by talking to the victims of these heinous acts.
American Gangster premieres on Wednesday, November 29.
BET HIP HOP AWARDS
With the overwhelming success of the BET AWARDS, CELEBRATION OF GOSPEL and BET COMEDY AWARDS, the network is now saluting the music and artists that have been a big part of BET�s overall success with the BET HIP HOP AWARDS, televising November 15 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.
The program, which promises to be as electrifying as other major BET specials, will be hosted by comedian/actor Katt Williams and taped at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta. Performers and presenters will be announced in the coming months, but rest assured whoever shows up will bring it!
The first-ever BET HIP HOP AWARDS will be co-produced by BET and Cossette Productions.
ABOUT BET NETWORKS
BET Networks, a subsidiary of Viacom, Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B), is the nation�s leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news and public affairs television programming for the African-American audience. The primary BET channel reaches more than 81 million households according to Nielsen media research, and can be seen in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean. BET is the dominant African-American consumer brand with a diverse group of businesses extensions: BET.com, the Number 1 Internet portal for African Americans; BET Digital Networks � BET J, BET Gospel and BET Hip Hop, attractive alternatives for cutting-edge entertainment tastes; BET Event Productions, a full-scale event management and production company; BET Home Entertainment, a collection of BET-branded offerings for the home environment including DVDs and video-on-demand; and BET Mobile, a service venture into the lucrative world of ring tones, games and video content for wireless devices.