Facing a ratings slide, the Nickelodeon cable TV network is apparently banking heavily on the success of a new musical TV show titled How To Rock, and its chosen star, Cymphonique Miller, a name you might immediately recognize; she's Master P's 15-year old daughter.
Will Smith often gets criticized for sheperding his children's careers, but the Master P family is certainly building an entertainment empire of its own. His son, and Cymphonique's older brother Romeo Miller, formely known as Lil Romeo, also headlined his own Nickelodeon series a few years ago, and went on to appear in big screen projects, in addition to a music career.
No hate here though; not from me anyway.
And certainly none from Nickelodeon, a network that, as I said, has been facing ratings trouble, competing with the Disney Channel for kiddie eyeballs.
“We’re hoping for great things from Cymphonique - a big, fat, giant hit; That’s what I’ve been working for with this series, so why not say it?” said Margie Cohn, president of original programming at Nickelodeon to the New York Times. And the company is putting mucho muscle behind the new show, like an 8-part video series introducing Cymphonique Miller to the series' target audience; also a song Cymphonique sings in episode 1 of the series was made available on iTunes on Christmas day.
How to Rock, produced by the same production company responsible for The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, centers on "a popular girl who is rejected by her perfectly coiffed clique - a group of girls called “the Perfs” - after she gets glasses and braces. The joke is on them as she joins a band and creates a new cool crowd."
And the young Ms Miller will star as the girl described in the above synopsis, with the series scheduled to make its debut on February 4th, 2012.
I'm not in Nickelodeon's target audience, so I don't expect that I'll be watching this new series (although I'll probably check out an episode or two just so I can get a feel for her talent, and be able to talk about the series); but I'll certainly be watching the young Ms Miller's career from here-on, as she ages.
It's not often that a TV mainstream network puts this much effort behind a project starring a person of African descent - and a relatively unproven talent as well.