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'Scandal' Is Heading To BET

Television
by Tambay A. Obenson
July 15, 2013 11:21 AM
14 Comments
  • |
Scandal S2

As I've said before, regardless of what you might still think of BET, the network is certainly doing what it can to demonstrate a genuine desire to completely shift public perception, given its recent original content push, and aggressive moves to acquire popular content, like this piece of news...

BET has acquired "off-network rights" to the hit ABC series Scandal - created by Shonda Rhimes, starring Kerry Washington

In short, what this means in that BET will air the first 2 seasons of the show, and then when the new season (the 3rd season) begins this fall, each episode will air on BET immediately after they air on ABC - although no word on how much time will pass between when each episode airs on ABC and then on BET.

The deal will continue for future seasons, as long as Scandal is renewed for a 4th, 5th, 6th, etc season.

This may not immediately seem like a big deal, but, instead of a lengthy explanation, I'll just say that there's a lot of money to be made in syndication (by both ABC and BET), especially for a very popular show like Scandal.

"We’re thrilled to be joining forces with ABC in airing this dynamic series," said BET's Debra Lee said in a press statement. "Scandal is a cultural phenomenon that has resonated with viewers for the past two seasons and we're excited to be part of its continued journey."

This is BET's first syndicated scripted drama pick-up, one that I'm sure they're hoping will pay off in ratings and ad revenue.

Who knows, with moves like this, maybe it puts BET closer to being in a position to make deals directly with creative forces the likes of Shonda Rhimes.

I'm actually surprised that Oprah Winfrey didn't think to do this for OWN.

I love how competitive the "black TV network" space is becoming, especially with OWN seemingly entering it, although that wasn't the network's original intent. But right now, BET is clearly leading the pack, with Bounce TV, ASPiRE, TV One, and others, behind, especially in terms of original scripted programming.

Something to definitely watch closely.

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14 Comments

  • Kazmu | July 16, 2013 3:53 AMReply

    I couldn't agree more. This is a big deal. I've been preaching for the longest. Black filmakers have options now. "TVOne, BET, Aspire, Bounce, NetFlix, Amazon & YouTube. There is no reason to keep crying. What I call the Hollywood Blues. In other words "Hollywood" is not the only game in town. To hell with Hollywood take your "A" game to the other channels I mention.

  • goDeeper | July 16, 2013 2:44 AMReply

    If you go deeper, you'll find there are busload of black content creators who are terribly unhappy with BET. I can think of 4 off the top of my head. BET's "commitment" is not all its cracked up to be.

  • Hardrhymer | July 23, 2013 1:31 PM

    Do tell! Inquiring minds and all that.

  • Troy | July 15, 2013 8:06 PMReply

    "In short, what this means in that BET will air the first 2 seasons of the show, and then when the new season (the 3rd season) begins this fall, each episode will air on BET immediately after they air on ABC - although no word on how much time will pass between when each episode airs on ABC and then on BET."

    According to the Hollywood Reporter:

    "Additionally, original episodes from the upcoming third season of the Shonda Rhimes series will air no sooner than eight days after original first-run episodes are broadcast on ABC. The deal for off-network repeats extends to additional seasons of the drama if it should continue its run (likely). "

  • Mekisha Hale | July 15, 2013 6:56 PMReply

    Well this is different,since watching 'Being Mary Jane' on BET a week ago and after watching it I enjoyed the original series even though it was an mini series for the prime time show to be part of BET coming soon. But while that's being part of BET the news that BET is going to rerun Two Season's of Popular show from ABC Scandal starring actress Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope the character that this season had a surprise from an unlikely character entering the frame. But while that season finale is in the waiting until this fall when it returns,it's good to hear that BET has thought about making some news with such an interesting choice specially if your going to be a network that is trying to build it's brand and why not something that everyone just about the Gladiators unite even if it's only those two seasons with Scandal it's still a great idea for BET. In the years past BET has been criticized about it's programming for years and now with saving a show that was about to go into no where land with 'The Game' which appeared on the Paramount Station which now is called CW network. After it's unjustified removal from it's prime time line up then with a petition from the public and the demand,it's popular show returned this time with BET Networks. Yes if the question is this the right move for BET NETWORK. Then the answer is clear yes,but it's a start of something and that's good enough.

  • ALM | July 15, 2013 5:33 PMReply

    I'm still not here for BET. They have done 30 years of damage. It's a long road to redemption for BET.

    The good news is, as Tambay mentions, the syndication pay for Kerry and the rest of the cast.

  • Taz | July 15, 2013 9:50 PM

    In agreement with this.

  • Shan | July 15, 2013 3:13 PMReply

    Why are they promoting this trash to black people. Here is seemingly "intelligent" black woman who for some strange reason chooses to relegate herself to being a "side piece" for a white married man. I don't care if he is the "POTUS", she couldn't find a single black man to share her life with? ridiculous and demeaning and sadder still it was written by a black woman. Black America you are in trouble.

  • CC | July 16, 2013 9:08 AM

    SHAN, do not be deterred. Some of your detractors are but a small group who loves living vicariously through a woman who lusts after a race of people which has shown time and time again that they could care less about them.

    Also, it should be noted that the lead actress (a black woman) said she would not have taken the part if the president was played by a black man. She knew the show was targeted toward gullible and lonely black women. She also just recently married a black man, not a white man. But just think, what if the president was a black man, would a major A-List white actress play his scank on the side? Would the program even exist? Would it be a ratings hit in the black community? I think the answers are NO-NO-and HELL NO!

    And, think about this, if the president was black and his thang on the side was white, would there be a large group of angry white women (at a "white" blog) supporting and defending the notion that we live in a color-blind world? Nope, I-don't-think-so, they all know better.

    So SHAN, you should know that you're in the right place when your opinion is attacked by those blacks who believe the majority of white people love them. They are the ones who are lost, not you. Heck, I wonder if any who oppose your opinion agreed with the Trayvon Martin juror who said race was not an issue in that case? Yeah, imagine that, 6 white women didn't see race as an issue in a murder case even though all accounts points to the fact that Trayvon was "profiled" and subsequently killed because of his dark skin.

    Damn, things will never change as long as there are those who take shame at being pro-black.

  • beemooree | July 15, 2013 6:38 PM

    SHAN its obvious that you are bitter. Its fake but you can't tell that to fools like yourself and others

  • Justin | July 15, 2013 5:31 PM

    Oh shut up.

    This comment has GOT to be from some bitter, Black, single woman who is mad at the world because she cannot get a man. If you're still in disputes with yourself as to why I'm starting to get a pretty good idea over here. You're the kind that rolls her eyes when you see a Black man in a relationship with a White woman; the kind that isn't accepting of interracial relationships and scoff at the sight of them. So what if Olivia Pope, a COMPLETELY fictional character, falls in love with a White man? You act like its 1845. Is the show ridiculous and demeaning because of the interracial relationship? Because I find it ridiculous and quite childish to put off a rather successful show because the love-interest isn't of the same race. Grow up.

    And Shonda can write whatever she damn well pleases to write. Call me a blind fan or whatever, but until YOU make a hit, scripted TV series that garners the attention of millions around the country keep your mouth shut. No one has time for these ultra, pro-Black purists who see nothing but color. You're just as bad and as poisonous as Whites and other races in the same barrel.

    Catch that dirt.

  • Alex | July 15, 2013 3:36 PM

    Pipe down

  • Alex | July 15, 2013 3:33 PM

    Pipe down.

  • Dankwa Brooks | July 15, 2013 1:26 PMReply

    O' believe me I'M SURE Oprah had discussions with Ms. Rhimes. (Sorry couldn't resist the pun)

    "This may not immediately seem like a big deal, but, instead of a lengthy explanation, I'll just say that there's a lot of money to be made in syndication (by both ABC and BET), especially for a very popular show like Scandal."

    IT IS a big deal! Shows usually have to wait FIVE SEASONS (or for an extremely popular show like 'Big Bang Theory', four seasons) to secure syndication deals. For a show like 'Scandal' to sell this early is a big deal.

    Congratulations to Ms. Rhimes and the other "rights holders" to the series. Why yes that sound you hear is a cash register.

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