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BET Awards, World Cup Top Week’s Twitter TV Top 10s

By | Tuesday July 1, 2014 @ 8:00am PDT

BET Awards, World Cup Top Week’s Twitter TV Top 10sThe BET Awards, the capper to the cable channel’s annual BET Experience that annually overwhelms the L.A. Live entertainment district in downtown Los Angeles, grabbed lots of online attention in this week’s Twitter TV ratings, reaching an unduplicated audience of 9.3 million Twitter users with nearly 10.9 million tweets, far and away the biggest Twitter-borne conversation about any non-sports show. On the sports side of Nielsen’s weekly rundown of TV-related Twitter conversations, it was all FIFA World Cup soccer games, led by matches featuring the teams from the United States and Mexico.

Nielsen’s Twitter TV ratings attempt to measure the unduplicated audience of Twitter users who saw posts about a given broadcast during its first broadcast or within three hours before or after. In this case, the BET Awards overcame an unpromising early summer Sunday schedule to rock it out online, with a staggering number of tweets about the show. I can’t remember any other program in recent months with that many tweets (we’ve only been writing about this stuff since April or so, so mega events such as the Super Bowl and Oscars likely do much better, but then again, not much else has come close here since Deadline began tracking these numbers). There have been other shows that have reached a large audience, given the large followings of those talking about a show. But this show, from a relatively small basic-cable channel, is definitely an online overachiever.

Also of note in this week’s Series and Specials data: the shows that ended up Nos. … Read More »

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BET Awards Draw 7.9 Million Viewers

By | Monday June 30, 2014 @ 5:13pm PDT

BET Awards Draw 7.9 Million ViewersIt looks like taking over downtown LA for the weekend has paid of for BET. The BET Awards drew 7.9 million total viewers last night, dwarfing this year’s cable-aired awards shows like the MTV Movie Awards (those drew 3.2 million viewers April 13) and heating up social media with 11 million tweets about the event. The viewership number is up from the 7.8 million who tuned in last year, when Samuel L Jackson hosted. Chris Rock hosted this year and was spot on (why isn’t he on TV more?). The weekend’s BET Experience at L.A. Live drew 112,488 attendees for film screenings, 106 & Park live tapings, interviews and concerts featuring the likes of Outkast, Maxwell, Jill Scott, Mary J. Blige, Future, The Roots and Trey Songz.

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BET Greenlights Its First Miniseries; Renews ‘The Game’, ‘Real Husbands’ & ‘The Game’ & ‘Being Mary Jane’

By | Thursday April 24, 2014 @ 5:28pm PDT

BET announced its firstbetnet__130116222454 miniseries as part of its upcoming lineup presented to advertisers at its upfront today in New York. The network also confirmed an eighth season for The Game, Season 3 for The Real Husbands Of Hollywood and a previously announced second season for Being Mary Jane, along with renewals for video countdown series 106 And Park. Cuba Gooding Jr., Louis Gossett Jr and Aunjanue Ellis star in the six-part miniseries The Book Of Negroes, a historical drama based on the Commonwealth Prize-winning novel by Lawrence Hill. It tells the story of Aminita Diallo, who was abducted at age 11 from her village in West Africa and sent to live as a slave in South Carolina. The story follows her capture and her enslavement in America, eventually ending with her emancipation in England. BET is producing in partnership with eOne and The CBC. Read More »

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Keke Palmer To Host BET Daily Talk Show From Telepictures & Judge Greg Mathis

By | Monday April 21, 2014 @ 9:00am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Keke PalmerEXCLUSIVE: BET Networks is targeting millenials with a new daily talk show hosted by actress-singer Keke Palmer. The Keke Palmer Project (working title), which has been picked up for an initial four-week run, will premiere in July, airing Mondays-Fridays. Telepictures is producing. Judge Greg Mathis, whose long-time Bet Networkssyndicated court show Judge Mathis is produced by Telepictures, is executive producing after being instrumental in bringing together the Warner Bros TV syndication division and Palmer.

At age 20, Palmer will become the youngest talk show host in TV history. Her show will cover such topics as fashion, pop culture, social issues, seJudge Greg Mathisx, and will feature celebrity interviews, “on the street” bits and undercover segments. It stems from Palmer’s interaction with fans on social media. “I like to read quotes that touch on how I am feeling,” she said. “If I am dealing with confusion, I will read quotes about clarity and peace of mind. I started posting these quotes on my Twitter page, and the fans responded so positively! I realized that many of them were dealing with similar issues, and the quotes helped to open up a genuine dialogue between us.” Read More »

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Brittany Daniel Upped To Regular On BET’s ‘The Game’; A.J. Buckley In CBS’ Wall Street Drama Pilot

By | Tuesday April 1, 2014 @ 5:38pm PDT

After recurring in four episodes of Brittanydaniel1Season 7 of The Game, Brittany Daniel has been promoted to regular on the hit BET comedy series, which has just been picked up for an eighth season. Daniel, repped by APA, Inphenate and attorney Doug Stone, plays Kelly on the series, which follows the “football family” of the San Diego Sabers, exec produced by Mara Brock Akil, Salim Akil, Kenny Smith, Erica Montolfo-Buro and Kelsey Grammer. Daniel also appeared in The Game when it aired on the CW. It was canceled by that network in May 2009 and resuscitated by BET in early 2011. Daniels other TV credits include VH1′s Totally Awesome and a recurring role on It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia.
Read More »

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BET & Centric To Simulcast Live Season Premiere Of TV Land’s ‘The Soul Man’

By | Thursday March 13, 2014 @ 4:53pm PDT

The Soul ManHere’s a case of Viacom siblings playing nice. When the third-season premiere of The Soul Man airs live March 26 on TV Land, sister channels BET and Centric will simulcast it. After that, Centric will run new episodes of the Hot In Cleveland spinoff on Saturdays, 10 days after they bow on TV Land. The live season opener is a first for Soul Man, which stars Cedric the Entertainer as an R&B superstar-turned-minister who relocates from Las Vegas to St. Louis with his wife. TV Land said in January that Soul Man and Hot In Cleveland will have their season premieres back-to-back. It will be the second consecutive live season bow for the sitcom starring Betty White, Valerie Bertinelli, Wendie Malick and Jane Leeves.

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AMC’s ‘Game of Arms’, BET’s ‘Being Mary Jane’ Churn Up Network Record Ratings

By | Wednesday February 26, 2014 @ 3:20pm PST

Last night’s premiere of AMC’s newest unscripted series Game Of Arms debuted with 1 million Being Mary Jane Renewed BETviewers and 626,000 adults 18-49 at 10 PM,  making it AMC’s highest weeknight unscripted series premiere ever. Game Of Arms, from Undertow Films, looks at the highly competitive world of underground arm wrestling.

Meanwhile, BET has officially ordered a second season of its first original scripted drama series Being Mary Jane, after the finale — two back-to-back hours from 9-11 PM — averaged 2.6 million viewers in the first hour and 3.2 million in the second.

Related: BET Preps Second Season Of ‘Being Mary Jane’, Cancels ‘Reed Between The Lines’

The season finale event became the series’ best performing episode, outperforming its premiere. (In early January, an average of 3.3 million viewers tuned in to check out the unveiling of the Gabrielle Union-starring vehicle, after which an immediate repeat clocked 1.8 million.) During February, the top 5 weeknight cable drama premiere telecasts were dominated by new episodes of the series, and it  finished out its first season as the No. 1 new original scripted series on ad-supported cable for the TV season to date among adults 18-49 and women 18-49. Read More »

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Stephen Bishop Upped To Regular On BET’s ‘Being Mary Jane’; Tory Kittles Joins ‘Intruders’

By | Thursday February 20, 2014 @ 6:29pm PST

stevenbishopStephen Bishop (Moneyball) has been upped to a series regular on BET’s Being Mary Jane, which stars Gabrielle Union as a successful TV news anchor. Bishop will play David, a man Mary Jane brings back into her life to work things out. Bishop, repped by Greene & Associates, Weiner Management and Dave Feldman, next will be seen in Miss Meadows opposite Katie Holmes.

True Detective‘s Tory Kittles has signed on to Intruders, BBC America’s eight-kittles1episode original series. Written by Glen Morgan, Intruders is about a secret society devoted to chasing immortality by seeking refuge in the bodies of others. It centers on ex-cop Jack Whalen (John Simm), who has escaped a dark, violent past for a seemingly quiet life with his wife, Amy (Mira Sorvino). When she goes missing, Jack starts an investigation that forces him to confront his past. Kittles will play Gary Fischer, a handsome attorney and old friend of Whalen’s (Simm) who quietly asks him to investigate a mysterious double homicide. Kittles, repped by APA and Circle of Confusion’s Frank Frattaroli, recently wrapped feature American Heist and has a recurring on FX’s Sons Of Anarchy.

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BET’s ‘Being Mary Jane’ Series Debut Cumes 5 Million Viewers

By | Wednesday January 8, 2014 @ 4:07pm PST

An average of 3.3 million viewersbeingmaryjane__130912193819-275x154 tuned in to check out BET‘s first original scripted drama series, Being Mary Jane at 10 PM Tuesday, after which an immediate repeat clocked 1.8 million. BET boasted that made it the No. 1 original series debut on cable for the 2013-14 TV season. Being Mary Jane stars Gabrielle Union as a successful TV news anchor, and hails from Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil, the duo behind BET’s flagship comedy The Game.

Being Mary Jane actually was first unveiled to viewers in July as a 90-minute TV movie, paired with the midseason return of BET’s The Game. That pilot premiere proved a winner for the cable network, becoming the night’s highest-rated show on cable, and the second-highest-rated program on all of TV with a 2.0 demo rating. Only NBC’s America’s Got Talent did better in adults 18-49 that night with its 2.3 rating. Being Mary Jane attracted an average of 4 million viewers that night and, based on that July success, Deadline reported the network went ahead and quietly ordered a second season. Read More »

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BET Preps Second Season Of ‘Being Mary Jane’, Cancels ‘Reed Between The Lines’

By | Thursday September 12, 2013 @ 12:39pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

BET‘s drama Being Mary Jane is not slated to debut as a regular series until early next year but I hear the network has already quietly ordered a second season, following the 90-minute pilot’s big premiere in July when it drew 4 million viewers and a 2.0 adults 18-49 rating. Being Mary Jane, starring Gabrielle Union as a successful TV news anchor, hails from Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil, the duo behind BET’s flagship comedy The Game, which is in production on Season 7.

Meanwhile, I hear BET has pulled the plug on comedy Reed Between The Lines. The show, got off to a solid start with Tracee Ellis Ross starring as Dr. Carla Reed, a successful psychologist trying to balance her family and career, and Malcolm-Jamal Warner as her husbad. It was renewed for a second season in April 2012 but underwent a revamp later that year when Ross departed. BET is yet to schedule Season 2. The first season of Reed spawned a spinoff, Young Man On Campus starring Jacob Latimore, which didn’t go past the pilot stage.

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BET’s ‘The Game’ Season Six Finale Scores Strong Female Stats

By | Wednesday September 4, 2013 @ 5:07pm PDT

An average of 3.8 million people watched the sixth-season finale of BET’s The Game at 10 PM last night, and 1.9 million watched the replay at 10:30. The episode is this season’s No. 1 comedy series telecast on all of cable among women 18-49 (1.7 million). The sitcom that follows the “football family” of the San Diego Sabers — exec produced by Mara Brock Akil, Salim Akil, Kenny Smith, Erica Montolfo-Buro and Kelsey Grammer — wound up its third consecutive season as cable’s leading weeknight sitcom in 18-49. BET announced in April that the former CW comedy series (canceled by that network in May of ’09, resuscitated by BET in  early ’11) had been picked up for a seventh season.

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‘Rizzoli & Isles’ Lands Syndication Deal, ‘Scandal’ Acquired By BET

By | Monday July 15, 2013 @ 1:55pm PDT

Warner Bros Domestic Television Distribution a broadcast weekend off-net window for the TNT drama Rizzoli & Isles in 95% of the country for a fall 2015 debut. The detective series debuted its fourth season June 25 as the highest-rated cable premiere of the summer, drawing 6.6 million total viewers, with 2.3 million adults 25-54 and 1.8 million adults 18-49 — up double digits in viewership and the key demos compared with the previous season. Rizzoli & Isles has been sold into 170 markets including stations owned by Fox, CBS, Sinclair, Hearst, Gannett, Lin, Local TV, Cox, Raycom, Weigel, Meredith, Mission, Nexstar, New Age, Journal, Scripps, Gray, Grant, Max Media, London, West Virginia, Media, Lockwood, Drewry, Cordillera, Bonten, Bahakel, Citadel, Diversified, Woods, Schurz and Mckinnon. The show was developed for TV by Janet Tamaro, who serves as executive producer with Bill Haber and Michael Katleman. The series is from Hurdler Productions and Ostar Productions in association with Warner Horizon Television.

BET Networks has licensed rights to air current season episodes of ABC’s Scandal. The pact calls for each episode to air on BET no earlier than eight days after its original broadcast on ABC, exclusively starting in the fall. BET also will debut the first two seasons of the series this summer and is also licensing exclusive off-network cable rights to the series starting in … Read More »

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BET To Air ‘Fruitvale Station’ Special After Strong Box Office Start

By | Monday July 15, 2013 @ 7:32am PDT

New York, NY – July 15, 2013 – The Weinstein Company (TWC) announced today the special “FRUITVALE STATION: The Story of Oscar Grant,” a behind the scenes look at the making of the film, will premiere exclusively on BET Networks on Monday, July 15, 2013 from 7:30 – 8:00 P.M. ET/PT. The special will also re-air on CENTRIC on Friday, July 19 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The full-length film opened to limited release on July 12, 2013 to rave reviews and tremendous box office success, and tells the real-life story of Oscar Grant played by rising star Michael B. Jordan. Monday’s making-of special will trace the remarkable journey of this film from production to Sundance to Cannes and now in theaters across the country. TWC is proud to collaborate with BET who has championed this film from its very beginning starting with the Sundance Film Festival. BET recognized early on the importance of director Ryan Coogler’s feature debut film and the significance of Oscar Grant’s story. They have shown tremendous support for the film including – the BET Experience screening in late June, featuring the film and its star Michael B. Jordan at the BET Awards earlier this month, partnering with TWC on the film’s New York premiere on July 8th, and online features onBET.com.

Related: Specialty Box Office: ‘Fruitvale Read More »

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BET Scores With Return Of ‘The Game’ & ‘Being Mary Jane’ Debut

By | Wednesday July 3, 2013 @ 3:15pm PDT

The midseason return of BET’s The Game and the pilot premiere of Being Mary Jane proved a winner for the cable network last night. The 90-minute Being Mary Jane was the highest-rated show on cable and the second-highest-rated program on all of TV on Tuesday with a 2.0 rating. Only NBC’s America’s Got Talent did better in adults 18-49 last night with its 2.3 rating. Starring Gabrielle Union, the 10:30 PM-midnight telecast from BET Productions and Akil Productions pulled in 4.013 million viewers and is the top weeknight primetime TV movie of the year in 18-49 and women 18-49. The Being Mary Jane series is set to debut in 2014. Meanwhile, the mid-Season 6 return of The Game saw the sports comedy score a 1.7 rating with 3.589 million viewers at 10 PM. Read More »

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‘The Book Of Negroes’ Coming To Small Screen As Miniseries For BET, CBC

By | Tuesday June 11, 2013 @ 5:00am PDT

Lawrence Hill’s best-selling 2007 novel is getting the longform TV treatment, with Conquering Lion Pictures, Out Of Africa Entertainment and Entertainment One prepping the story as a miniseries. Production on The Book Of Negroes — which was published in some territories including the U.S. as Someone Knows My Name — will begin in the fall on the project written Clement Virgo and Hill. It will air stateside on BET and on CBC in Canada. The story centers on Aminata Diallo, who is taken by slave traders from West Africa to South Carolina. It follows her through the American Revolution in New York, the isolated refuge of Nova Scotia and the jungles of Sierra Leone, before she ultimately secures her freedom in England in the early 1800s. Produced in association with Canadian Broadcasting Company and Black Entertainment Television, the Canada-South Africa co-production is executive produced by Damon D’Oliveira, Virgo, Lance Samuels, Daniel Iron, Michael Levine and Carrie Stein. eOne is handling the worldwide rights.

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Netflix Says It Will Let Viacom Deal Expire

By | Monday April 22, 2013 @ 2:54pm PDT

This news nugget was tucked into Netflix‘s letter to investors that CEO Reed Hastings and CFO David Wells released today: They say that at the end of May they won’t renew their broad deal with Viacom Networks that enables Netflix to carry programming from Nickelodeon, BET and MTV. “We are in discussions with them about licensing particular shows but have yet to conclude a deal,” the execs say. The change reflects Netflix’s effort to “focus on exclusive and curated content” which lessens its willingness to pay for “non-exclusive, bulk content deals.” Hastings and Wells add that “with all the recently added fresh programming from Disney, Cartoon Network, Hasbro’s The Hub and DreamWorks Animation, we have a great kids offering.” Netflix also says that it will try to appeal to large families by offering an $11.99 a month service that enables subscribers to stream up to four shows simultaneously vs the standard $7.99 service which allows two streams. The execs say that they expect “fewer than 1% of members to take it.”

Related:
Netflix CEO Says ‘Hemlock Grove’ Beat ‘House Of Cards’ In Early Viewing
Netflix Shares Soar After It Beats Q1 Earnings Forecasts

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BET Renews ‘The Game’, Officially Picks Up ‘Being Mary Jane’ To Series, Revives ‘ComicView’, Orders T.D. Jakes Talk Show

By | Tuesday April 2, 2013 @ 2:00pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

BET NetworksBET today unveiled its slate of new and returning series to advertisers at its upfront presentation in Los Angeles. Mara Brock Akil was front and center as her hit comedy series The Game was renewed for a seventh season, and her newest project, drama Being Mary Jane, originally picked up as a movie, was formally ordered to series. Other new series pitched to advertisers include a revival of standup showcase ComicView after a five-year hiatus, a weekly talk show starring Bishop T.D. Jakes, and Burns BBQ, a reality series produced by Arthur Smith. The network had the attendees on their feet with a performance by Chaka Khan, who sang her anthem Tell Me Something Good. With multiple cable networks, including OWN, looking to tap into the strong and loyal Black TV audiences, BET’s president of original programming Loretha Jones touted BET as being “better connected” to the African-American community than any other network. Here are details about BET and sibling Centric’s new and returning series:

NEW PROGRAMMING ON BET:  

· BEING MARY JANE– From the producers of the award-winning, record breaking BET comedy THE GAME, GIRLFRIENDS and box-office hits JUMPING THE BROOM and SPARKLE comes an original series starring the gorgeous and talented Gabrielle Union. The series is a follow up to the release of the BEING MARY JANE movie of the week slated to launch on BET this summer. Read More »

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BET Renews ‘Real Husbands Of Hollywood’ For Second Season

By | Friday March 8, 2013 @ 9:17am PST
Nellie Andreeva

BET has ordered a 12-episode second season of semi-scripted comedy Real Husbands Of Hollywood. The series, created by Kevin Hart and Chris Spencer, debuted to more than 4 million viewers in January. Labeled the “fakest reality show ever,” Real Husbands Of Hollywood features actor/comedian Kevin Hart and his Hollywood pals as they navigate their way through stardom alongside – or in spite of – their famous wives. The cast includes Nick Cannon, husband of Mariah Carey, Boris Kodjoe, husband of actress Nicole Ari Parker, Duane Martin, husband of actress Tisha Campbell-Martin, J. B. Smoove, husband of the songstress Shahidah Omar and Robin Thicke, husband of actress Paula Patton. Also expected to return for Season 2 is Nelly. “When we launched this series in January, we knew our audience would have as much fun watching it as we had making it, and since it has been on the air, fans have voiced on social media that they want more. So this was a pretty simple decision: ‘Hey! Let’s make more!’ ” says Stephen Hill, BET’s President of Music Programming and Specials. Real Husbands Of Hollywood is executive produced by Kevin Hart, Stan Lathan, Ralph Farquhar, Jesse Collins, Tim Gibbons, Chris Spencer and Dave Becky.

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Lionsgate’s Codeblack Films Picks Up Angela Davis Documentary

By | Wednesday January 30, 2013 @ 5:18am PST

Codeblack Films has acquired the theatrical rights to the documentary Free Angela and All Political Prisoners. Written and directed by Shola Lynch, the film about Angela Davis premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year. Free Angela chronicles how the young college professor became one of America’s most renowned revolutionaries and ended up on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted list. Presented by BET Networks, the film will be released exclusively in select AMC theatres in Washington D.C., Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Oakland, Philadelphia and Atlanta on April 5, 2013. “We knew that this film was important and would not only shed a spotlight on history, but provide a flashlight for our future. Angela Davis is a staple in history and continues to cross generational and cultural lines in her plight to fight for the freedom of all people,” said Jeff Clanagan, CEO of Codeblack Enterprises in a statement Wednesday. Codeblack Films was launched by Lionsgate in May 2012 to develop and distribute films and other media for the urban market.

This is Lynch’s second film about activism and upheaval in the early Seventies. In 2004 the filmmaker debuted with Chisholm ’72 – Unbought & Unbossed about the African-American Congresswomen’s unsuccessful run for the Democratic Party’s 1972 Presidential nomination. Lynch, Carole Lambert, Carine Ruszniewski, and Sidra Smith produce Read More »

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