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“ABC its not us, it’s you.” That’s probably what showrunner Shonda Rhimes probably said when she announced she was taking Shondaland to Netflix to create more original content for the streaming network!

Yep, you read right ABC and Shonda Rhimes have parted ways! This definitely comes as a shock, especially since Grey’s Anatomy is still the highest-rated show on the network.

via THR:

shondaland logo

Under the multiple-year deal, Rhimes and her Shondaland banner will create and produce new projects for the streaming giant. Rhimes’ longtime producing partner Betsy Beers will continue to head Shondaland in the move to Netflix. Under what is said to be a rich four-year pact, Rhimes is expected to score a percentage of the back-end on programming she creates for Netflix. 

“Shonda Rhimes is one of the greatest storytellers in the history of television,” Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said. “Her work is gripping, inventive, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, taboo-breaking television at its best. I’ve gotten the chance to know Shonda and she’s a true Netflixer at heart — she loves TV and films, she cares passionately about her work, and she delivers for her audience. We’re so excited to welcome her to Netflix.”

The move further aligns Rhimes with Netflix, which has featured the Grey’s Anatomy library that has helped elevate the veteran ABC medical soap to become the network’s most-watched drama — a rare feat for a show in its 13th season. The series heads into season 14 in the fall as it sets its sights on being the longest-running medical drama on television alongside ER. 

“Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company,” Rhimes said. “Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation. The future of Shondaland at Netflix has limitless possibilities.”

abc logo

ABC will continue to remain home to Grey’s Anatomy and its upcoming spinoff as well as Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder as well as the forthcoming drama For the People. Rhimes had been with ABC Studios for 15 years.

“Our current shows will continue to thrive on ABC and Shondaland will be there every step of the way,” Rhimes said. “I could not have asked for a better home to begin my career. I continue to be grateful to work with so many talented people — especially our studio gladiator Patrick Moran and our most powerful and brilliant champion Channing Dungey. Starting today, we are thrilled to begin creating new Shondaland stories with Netflix. Everyone at Shondaland is honored to expand both our audience and our creative identity with Ted and the entire team at Netflix.”

ABC Studios will remain the home to Shondaland disciples Pete Nowalk (How to Get Away With Murder), Krista Vernoff (Grey’s Anatomy), Stacy McKee (the Grey’s spinoff), Don Todd and Paul William Davies (For the People), Mark Fish (Scandal), Mark Wilding (Grey’s spinoff), Bill Harper (Grey’s Anatomy) and Allan Heinberg.

“We’re so proud of the work we’ve done with Shonda and Betsy throughout our long and productive relationship. From the worldwide success of Grey’s Anatomy to today, with five series, a pilot from Allan Heinberg and a number of projects in development, we will continue to shepherd that success together,” ABC Studios president Moran said. “The Shondaland imprint will always be an important part of ABC Studios and we wish them all the best in this new endeavor.”

Added ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey, who previously headed drama at the network: “Shonda, Betsy and I started working together with the first episode of Grey’s Anatomy and those early days will forever remain one of the highlights of my professional life. We are happy to continue working with Shonda and her team at Shondaland on Grey’s, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and the upcoming For the People and Grey’s spinoff. I’m proud to have given a home to what have become some of the most celebrated and talked about shows on television. With the launch of a new season upon us, fans can rest assured that TGIT remains intact and will be as buzzed about as ever.”

Sources say Rhimes had been renegotiating her overall deal with ABC Studios for the past few months. That the prolific producer would exit the network’s studio sibling comes as a blow for broadcast and a hint of things to come in the arms race for talent. With more than 455 scripted originals, broadcast, cable and streaming platforms are turning to proven hit-makers like Rhimes for new material. Rhimes is the first African-American woman to notch the rare 100-episode milestone three times in her career (for Grey’s, Private Practice and Scandal). 

netflix logo

For Rhimes, it gives the star showrunner a new forum to tell richer stories that push the envelope as she has yet to explore the cable or streaming world. Scandal further solidified Rhimes as one of TV’s most powerful showrunners and helped ABC bolster its Thursday lineup. With the strength of Scandal and emergence of How to Get Away With Murder, the network moved Grey’s Anatomy to its formerly troubled 8 p.m. hour as it created a “TGIT”-branded night consisting of three Rhimes-produced dramas. Creatively, Scandal helped usher in a new era of diversity on the small screen when Rhimes cast Kerry Washington as fixer Olivia Pope. Washington picked up her first Emmy nomination in 2013 and became the first African American to be nominated for best drama actress in the past 18 years and fifth overal

The Rhimes deal — the streamer’s first overall — comes as free-spending Netflix has been aggressive when it comes to luring top talent. Last week, the streamer picked up a talk show hosted by David Letterman and acquired comic book publisher Millarworld as it pushes to own more of its content. (Last week, The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman moved from his home at AMC to Amazon under a rich overall deal as the streamer retail giant begins to do the same.)

I think I’ll be keeping my Netflix subscription now!

Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

michael j. fanning owner of hey mikey atl

Follow me on Twitter/IG @HeyMikeyATL

Television & Radio

Terri J. Vaughn, DC Young Fly, & Emmanuel Hudson’s New Comedy, #DigitalLivesMatter!

Nina Holiday Entertainment is proud to announce, #DigitalLivesMatter,  will premiere on BET Saturday October 21st at 8pm.  

#DigitalLivesMatter is a comedic film that teams up the hilarious social media kings, DC Young Fly (TRL, Wild ‘N Out, Almost Christmas) and Emmanuel Hudson (Ride Along, Wild ‘N Out). 

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digital lives matter

Nina Holiday Entertainment is proud to announce, #DigitalLivesMatter,  will premiere on BET Saturday October 21st at 8pm.

#DigitalLivesMatter is a comedic film that teams up the hilarious social media kings, DC Young Fly (TRLWild ‘N Out, Almost Christmas) and Emmanuel Hudson (Ride Along, Wild ‘N Out).

dc young fly and emmanuel hudson digital lives matter

This film serves as directorial debut from Steve Harvey Show alum Terri J. Vaughn, with David Banner and DC Young Fly serving as producers. The film also stars Ernestine Johnson, Navv Greene, and comedian Rodney Perry (Madea’s Big Happy Family) with a special appearance from Love and Hip Hop star, Stevie J.

terri j. vaughn
DC Young Fly is on top of the world with over 3 million Instagram followers, and his fame is growing with every post. However, when this social media influencer crosses the wrong computer geek, all hell breaks
loose and DC wakes up to find all his followers are gone! Immediately, DC enlists the help of his best friend Theo (Emmanuel Hudson) to help him get his followers back. Throughout the day, DC receives several direct messages from the mysterious hacker responsible for his dilemma, sending him on a variety of comical tasks that require him to do favors for his followers. With every hilarious occurrence, DC realizes the power of his social media influence and how that influence can be used to make an impact on the lives of real people.

When asked about the movie, Vaughn says “What the movie Friday was for Compton and my generation, #DigitalLivesMatter is that for Atlanta and the new generation of millennials.  We made this movie to showcase the talent based here in Atlanta. The film is produced by Atlanta based production companies,  stars all Atlanta talent, is financed by an Atlantan, and has a completely Atlanta based crew. We are very proud of what we were able to bring to life.  Many of the actors are new to acting, but have huge social media followings. We were careful to give their fans what they have grown to love about them and then some. There will be several break out stars here!”

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Television & Radio

WTF!? BET Cancels “Being Mary Jane!” Series Will End in 2018 w/ Two Hour Movie!

Just when we thought BET could not make anymore bad programming decisions the network has announced it is cancelling Being Mary Jane after four seasons!

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bet cancels being mary jane

Just when we thought BET could not make anymore bad programming decisions the network has announced it is cancelling Being Mary Jane after four seasons!

This comes as a shocker as the series, starring Gabrielle Union, has been met with critical acclaim and is easily the greatest original programming BET has ever created.

via BET 

gabrielle union

“Being Mary Jane has been a landmark series not only for BET, but for African American women around the world who saw themselves in Mary Jane, her family, friends and coworkers. From the captivating storytelling, to the richly complex characters, to the powerful issues tackled on the series, we remain immensely proud,” said Connie Orlando, EVP and Head of Programming, BET Networks. “We are grateful to the cast and creators of Being Mary Jane, who have worked tirelessly to bring this world to vivid life over the past 4 seasons. We also thank the many loyal viewers whose hearts and minds were captured every week, and kept Mary Jane trending worldwide. We look forward to closing out Mary Jane’s journey with a series finale that is sure to blow fans away!”

The character of Mary Jane Paul/Pauletta Patterson is definitely someone many people could relate to. Every family or group of friends has that one overachiever or person who serves as the glue. Gabrielle Union once described her role as Mary Jane as the best work she has done in her life and we have to agree. Sure, we are use to seeing her play the alpha female role often, but this time the character was layered with successes, triumphs, insecurities, and her own demons when it came to her love life. All we can say is Tuesday nights just will not be the same. Thus far we know Gabrielle has signed on for the series finale, there is no word on the rest of the cast. Maybe we will finally see Mary Jane walk down the aisle or have that baby she wants so badly.

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Television & Radio

TV ONE’S BOBBI KRISTINA PREMIERES #1 IN TIME SLOT AMONG AA AND RANKS AS NETWORK’S #3 ORIGINAL MOVIE PREMIERE OF ALL TIME ACROSS ALL DEMOS

The premiere of TV One’s original film, Bobbi Kristina, premiered at #1 among African Americans on ad-supported cable in the Sunday 7pm-9pm timeslot: (HH, P25-54, W25-54, P18-49, W18-49, P2+).

The film now ranks as TV One’s third most watched original movie premiere ever, across all key demos. The three airings of Bobbi Kristina on premiere night had a combined reach of 2.2 Million Unique Viewers 2+. TV One will air an encore presentation of the highly anticipated film tonight, October 10 at 8 p.m. ET and Wednesday, October 11 at 10 p.m. ET.

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bobbi kristina biopic

The premiere of TV One’s original film, Bobbi Kristina, premiered at #1 among African Americans on ad-supported cable in the Sunday 7pm-9pm timeslot: (HH, P25-54, W25-54, P18-49, W18-49, P2+).

The film now ranks as TV One’s third most watched original movie premiere ever, across all key demos. The three airings of Bobbi Kristina on premiere night had a combined reach of 2.2 Million Unique Viewers 2+. TV One will air an encore presentation of the highly anticipated film tonight, October 10 at 8 p.m. ET and Wednesday, October 11 at 10 p.m. ET.

bobbi kristina biopic

Driven by Bobbi Kristina, TV One was the #3 Rated non-sports Ad Supported Cable Net from 7pm-9pm among Adult W25-54. This was also the network’s best SundayPrimetime Performance since the record-setting debut of Love Under New Management: The Miki Howard Story (6/12/16). Additionally on Twitter, the #BobbiKristina premiere trended nationally, ranking as high as #3 nationally.

Beginning immediately after the passing of her mother, this poignant story delves into Bobbi Kristina’s struggle to come to terms with Houston’s sudden departure and the complexities of her own life. Starring breakout Joy Rovaris in the title role, Bobbi Kristina presents the first three-dimensional look at a story – and a life – that deserve better.  In 2012, Whitney Houston’s tragic demise put her entire family in the worldwide media spotlight, with most of the glare falling on her grieving daughter, Bobbi Kristina. Krissi became one of the main characters in the story of Houston’s death and its devastating aftermath as she struggled with her grief, her personal relationships, upholding her mother’s legacy and her plans for the future. Bobbi Kristina offers a rare glimpse into the world of this young woman whose brief life and untimely end remain shrouded in mystery.

bobbi kristina biopic

Opposite Rovaris, Bobbi Kristina stars Demetria McKinney who delivers an uncanny performance as she embodies the heart, flair and essence of the legendary Whitney Houston. The film also stars Nadji Jeter as Nick Gordon, Hassan Johnson as Bobby Brown, and Vivica A. Fox as Pat Houston. Le’Azionna Braden makes her screen debut as young Bobbi Kristina.

The film is directed by Ty Hodges, with screenplay by Rhonda Baraka.  Executive Producers Tracey Baker Simmons and Wanda Shelley, creators of the docu-series’ “Being Bobby Brown” and “The Houstons,” developed the underlying story.

Bobbi Kristina is produced for TV One by Eric Tomosunas (executive producer), Keith Neal and James Seppelfrick of Swirl Films. Casting was provided by Leah Daniels Butler. For TV One, Donyell McCullough is Senior Director of Talent & Casting; Robyn Greene-Arrington is VP of Original Programming and Executive in Charge of Production, and D’Angela Proctor is Head of Original Programming and Production.

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