LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)-BET Networks is burning up television screens this summer with the rollout of its Summer 2015 programming slate, including hot new original series, returning hits, mind-blowing mega-specials, fun original movies, star-studded live events, and in-depth news specials. On the heels of a successful spring programming season, BET Networks keeps the momentum going with over 16 program premieres planned throughout the summer, as the network continues its reign as the #1 network for African American households. BET is bringing the heat as its diverse slate is set to capture viewers’ attention, while reflecting and celebrating the lives of African American adults.
Whether you want to turn all the way up or sip tea in the shade, BET has a show for every occasion. First up, audiences can bask in the glory of returning hit series, including the hilarious antics of Kevin Hart and the “REAL HUSBANDS OF HOLLYWOOD;” a first-time “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS,” which will give former fan favorite contestants a chance at redemption; and the can’t-miss bittersweet final season of “THE GAME.” Also returning for its fourth season is Centric’s docu-series “BEING,” featuring some of today’s biggest artists and names.
Then BET turns up the volume on reality, with the premieres of “DESEAN JACKSON: HOME TEAM” [WT], which follows the NFL superstar as he navigates fame and family; and a BET-branded reboot of popular prank series, “PUNK’D.” The real-life stakes remain high with the returns of “NELLYVILLE,” which will give viewers a front row seat to Nelly’s recent headline-making drama; and “FRANKIE & NEFFE,” an intimate glimpse into the complex lives of Keyshia Coles’ mother and sisters.
BET keeps the party going with its star-studded tentpole and mega-special events. In partnership with Roc Nation Sports, BET presents its first LIVE boxing event, “ANDRE WARD vs. PAUL SMITH.” And this year, BET is pulling out all the stops as it celebrates the 15th anniversary of the “BET AWARDS,” promising the biggest celebrities in music, film, sports and philanthropy. Plus, fans are invited to the 3rd annual BET EXPERIENCE AT L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles, a four-day festival leading up to the big night.
BET News is also making a splash this summer with a special tribute to boxing champ and icon, “MUHAMMAD ALI,” as well as an in-depth exploration of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in “HURRICANE KATRINA: 10 YEARS LATER.”
Finally, BET brings two big original movies to the small screen. First up, Regina King directs “LET THE CHURCH SAY AMEN,” starring Naturi Naughton as a wayward preacher’s daughter struggling to get her life back on track. Then hip-hop prince, Diggy Simmons, stars in “THE START UP,” which chronicles the captivating lives of young digital entrepreneurs as they navigate fame and adulthood.
From sports to music, sitcoms to movies, you can bet on BET to have this summer’s hottest hits. See the full BET Networks’ Summer 2015 programming slate below.
BET NETWORKS’ SUMMER 2015 PROGRAMMING SLATE
HOT NEW SERIES ON BET
- “DESEAN JACKSON: HOME TEAM” [WT] Washington Redskins’ wide receiver DeSean Jackson is literally at the top of his game as one of the most talked about and watched players in the NFL today. While being watched is a great thing, it means eyes are always on him– waiting for him to score touchdowns and waiting for him to drop the ball off the field. Even though he has the money and the fame, DeSean depends on the guidance of a core group of women including his “momager” Gayle, his sister and assistant A’Dreea, his publicist and his new girlfriend, Kayla. Produced by Rogue Atlas Productions in association with Lionsgate Television. Eli Frankel, Ryan Holcomb, Elise Duran, DeSean Jackson and Byron Jackson serve as Executive Producers. Jay Fragus and Lawrence Bell serve as Co-Executive Producers “DESEAN JACKSON: HOME TEAM” [WT] premieres Tuesday, June 30, at 10pm ET/PT on BET.
A reboot of the popular hidden camera series tailored for the BET audience. For the first time, audiences will be taken behind the scenes as the pranks are conceptualized and carried through. Stakes are high as our viewers follow the ticking clock on the journey of pranking their favorite celebrities. “PUNK’D” hails from Executive Producer Jason Goldberg, and is produced by Katalyst Media. “PUNK’D” debuts on August, 18th at 10:30pm.
RETURNING FAVORITE SERIES ON BET & CENTRIC
- “BEING” (on CENTRIC)
“BEING” is a one-hour documentary series that highlights the careers of seminal soul and vintage hip hop artists. “BEING” is inspirational, not tragic. Often beating the odds and rising from tough environments, these personalities have compelling and unknown stories that we know will inspire our audience. Throughout each episode we get to hear what it’s like “BEING” them at different points in their career and life. The new season of BEING premieres Saturday, June 6, at 10 P.M. ET/PT on Centric.
- “THE GAME” **FINAL SEASON**
Season 9 of “THE GAME” continues to explore the world of the San Diego Sabers through the eyes of its beloved characters, while bringing back some fan favorites to stir up the drama. Stars Coby Bell, Brandy Norwood, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Hosea Chanchez, Lauren London, Jay Ellis, Barry Floyd and Brittany Daniel. Executive Producers Mara Brock Akil, Salim Akil, Kenny Smith, Hale Rothstein and Jennifer Genzuk-Rice. Co-Executive Producer Claire Brown. Season 9 of “THE GAME” kicks off Wednesday, June 3, at 10pm ET/PT; The 90-minute Series finale airs July 29 at a special 9 P.M. ET/PT timeslot on BET.
- “FRANKIE & NEFFE”
“FRANKIE & NEFFE” picks up where “KEYSHIA COLE: ALL IN” left off, as viewers will get a deeper glimpse into the complex lives of Keyshia’s mother, Frankie, and 2 sisters, Neffe and Elite. While Neffe and Elite are determined to launch successful careers, they continue to struggle with Frankie, as her instability is a constant source of friction with her daughters. The family ties are inescapable, but Frankie, Neffe, and Elite are also three individual women at different stages of life. Whether they enter laughing or come out swinging, these funny, raw, unforgettable women fascinate us, and keep us rooting for their success. Keyshia Cole also makes guest appearances. Executive Producers: Susan Baronoff, Kenn Michael, Manny Halley and Keyshia Cole. “FRANKIE & NEFFE” premieres Wednesday, June 3, at 10:30 P.M. ET/PT on BET.
BET’s hit reality series, “NELLYVILLE,” continues its first season with 12 new episodes this summer giving viewers a front row seat to all of the unfolding drama. “NELLYVILLE” is a one-hour docu-series following Nelly as he navigates his busy career as a hip-hop icon, successful entrepreneur, and loving father to his two biological children (daughter “Nana” and son “Tre”) and his deceased sister’s two children (nephew “Lil Shawn” and niece “Stink”) – all while nurturing a friendship with Shantel “Miss” Jackson. Produced by Entertainment One and from Executive Producers John Morayniss, Tara Long and David Shaye for eOne; Howie Miller; Shanta Conic; Kim McKoy and Nelly and Co-Executive Producer J Erving. Supersized season 1 of “NELLYVIILLE” continues Tuesday, June 30, at 9pm ET/PT on BET.
- “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS”
Season eight of BET’s hit gospel competition show, “SUNDAY BEST,” returns with a special all-star edition featuring voter-picked contestants from the last seven seasons. “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS” not only sees the return of the series’ most memorable contestants, but also its legendary host and superstar judges. Executive Producer Kirk Franklin is back to host the supersized season along with judges Donnie McClurkin, Yolanda Adams and Kierra Sheard. Kim Burrell returns as mentor. The chosen “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS” will compete for a cash prize, recording contract with Franklin’s record label, Fo Yo Soul Recordings, and a second chance for the coveted Sunday Best crown. The excitement doesn’t end there, this season the “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS” will crown the new winner in a LIVE finale on Sunday, August 30. “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS” will run for seven consecutive weeks and is executive produced by Marilyn Gill, Kirk Franklin, Brian Gadinsky, and Arnold Preston. “SUNDAY BEST ALL STARS” premieres Sunday, July 19 at 8 PM ET/PT on BET.
- “REAL HUSBANDS OF HOLLYWOOD”
The fakest reality show ever is a real-life runaway smash. Led by comic genius Kevin Hart with an all-star cast (Nelly, Nick Cannon, Duane Martin, Dondre Whitfield and Cynthia McWilliams), Season 4 will provide more appointment television full of new rivalries, special guest stars and laugh-out-loud cliffhangers. From Executive Producers Kevin Hart, Stan Lathan, Ralph Farquhar, Jesse Collins, Chris Spencer and Dave Becky. Season 4 of “REAL HUSBANDS OF HOLLYWOOD” premieres Tuesday, August 18, at 10pm ET/PT on BET.
TENTPOLES & MEGA-SPECIALS ON BET
- ROC NATION LIVE BOXING – Andre Ward vs. Paul Smith
BET Networks steps into the ring with RocNation Sports as their exclusive broadcast partner to air live boxing events. The new partnership’s first main event fight to air on BET Networks will feature WBA Super Middleweight World Champion Andre Ward (27-0, 14 KO’s) facing former World Title Challenger Paul Smith (35-5, 20 KO’s) of England. The 12 round bout, presented by Roc Nation Sports and in association with Matchroom Sport, takes place at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. Ward vs. Smith will be televised LIVE Saturday, June 20, at 10:00 PM ET/7:00 PM PT on BET Networks, and streamed globally on TIDAL.com.
- BET EXPERIENCE AT L.A. LIVE
For the third year, BET is rolling out the red carpet in a big way during the BET Awards weekend. The BET Experience at L.A. Live will bring together thousands of music lovers for a four-day, jam-packed entertainment fest that will feature some of the world’s best music performers. There will also be a FREE Fan Fest, featuring the BET and Centric pavilions, Celebrity Basketball Game, comedy, seminars and the hottest industry parties. It’s a weekend you don’t want to miss! Visit BET.com/bet-experience for tickets and details. The BET Experience runs June 25 through June 27 at L.A. LIVE in Downtown Los Angeles.
- “BET AWARDS 2015”
Celebrating its 15th anniversary, the “BET AWARDS” franchise is the #1 program in cable television history among the Black audience, and is still a top 10 awards show on television (Broadcast & Cable) among total viewers. It continues to hold the leadership position because it gathers the biggest stars in music, sports, Hollywood, and philanthropy all on one stage for one incredible night. “BET AWARDS 2015” airs LIVE Sunday, June 28, on BET.
IN-DEPTH BET NEWS SPECIALS
- “MUHAMMAD ALI”
A biographical tribute to the former heavyweight champion, this news special will connect his boxing prowess as well as his social media activism to the millennial audience to reveal Ali’s meaning in the world today. Known as “The Greatest” and “The People’s Champion,” Ali remains a global icon. From Creative Control and Executive Producers Clarence “Coodie” Simmons and Chike Ozah. BET News’ “MUHAMMAD ALI” tribute premieres in August.
- “BET’S BEST MOMENTS”
Relive your favorite moments from BET’s historic archives over 5 episodes. “BET’s BEST MOMENTS” premieres Wednesday, August 5th, at 10 P.M. ET/PT on BET.
- “HURRICANE KATRINA: 10 YEARS LATER”
On the 10th Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, we will take a look back at the devastating effects of the storm as well as the current conditions of residents of the 9th Ward and neighborhoods most affected by the flooding. The water has receded but what’s left in its wake. “HURRICANE KATRINA: 10 YEARS LATER” premieres in August.
NEW ORIGINAL MOVIES ON BET
- LET THE CHURCH SAY AMEN
Twenty-one-year-old Rachel Jackson (Naturi Naughton) is a wayward preacher’s kid who is struggling to pull her life together. With a six-year-old son out of wedlock and a high school diploma, Rachel’s mission in life is to marry her son’s father in order to become a traditional and respectable family and regain her father’s respect. LET THE CHURCH SAY AMEN is a powerful journey through one family’s trials and tribulations and a remarkable story of reconciliation and love. Based on the best-selling novel by Reshonda Tate Billingsley, this two hour movie of the week will be a BET Premiere Cinema event starring Steve Harris, Naturi Naughton, Lela Rochon, Hosea Chanchez and Collins Curtis Pennie. Produced by Queen Latifah, Shakim Compere, Shelby Stone, Roger Bobb and Regina King, who is also making her theatrical directorial debut. Executive Produced by Regina King. LET THE CHURCH SAY AMEN is a BET Networks, Royal Ties and Flavor Unit Production. LET THE CHURCH SAY AMEN premieres in August.
- THE START UP
In THE START UP film, hip-hop prince Diggy Simmons stars as Blake Monroe, founder of TheJetsetters.com, an entertainment and lifestyle blog. THE START UP hones in on what it means to be young, gifted and digital, as Blake and his friends strategize for fame and financing while they navigate the freedoms and pressures of adulthood. Also starring Teyana Taylor, Bria Murphy, Allen Maldonado, Chris Brew, and Stephanie Charles. From Executive Producers Mara Brock Akil, Salim Akil, Kenya Barris, James DuBose and Laurie Dobbins. THE START UP premieres in September.