OWN is the new black…
Picking up Tyler Perry’s For Better or Worse (making it the 3rd Tyler Perry series on the network), and adding new reality series featuring the likes of Deion Sanders, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network has announced programming premieres and a new series for 2014.
As an aside… If I ever get the opportunity to interview Oprah Winfrey (likely never, but a guy can dream), my first question would be whether what her network has become (or at least the direction it seems to be heading towards) is whether this is what she had in mind for it, when she first had the idea the launch it. I wish someone would ask her that, because I’m genuinely curious, and would love to have been a fly on the wall during meetings/conversations with Discovery brass about how to shape it, after the network’s launch, through its early well-publicized struggles, to its current incarnation.
There’s a riveting, enlightening documentary to be made there, and I hope much of this journey has been documented on film. I’d love to watch that film: OWN: The Making Of A TV Network.
OWN: OPRAH WINFREY NETWORK ANNOUNCES PROGRAMMING PREMIERES AND A NEW SERIES FOR 2014
Los Angeles – OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network announced today programming premieres including new summer episodes of “Oprah’s Next Chapter,” September series premieres of Tyler Perry’s “For Better or Worse” season three (Sept. 18), and all new episodes of its popular series “Six Little McGhees” (Sept. 7), “Oprah’s Lifeclass” (Sept. 8) and “Super Soul Sunday” (Sept. 22). In addition, the network has ordered “It’s Prime’s Time” (working title) a new docu-series debuting in early 2014 that centers on sports legend Deion Sanders as he strives to keep his crazy and chaotic family life in balance.
“Oprah’s Next Chapter” (Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT)
“Oprah’s Next Chapter” is the award-winning primetime series featuring Oprah Winfrey as she steps outside of the studio for riveting, enlightening and in-depth conversations with newsmakers, celebrities, thought leaders and real-life families. “Oprah’s Next Chapter” is produced by Harpo Studios.
Hugh Jackman (July 28)
Oprah meets Hugh Jackman in New York City for an intimate conversation with the man behind the iconic “Wolverine” character from the “X-Men” franchise and one of Oprah’s all-time favorite leading men. Hugh discusses his two children with wife of 17 years Australian actress Deborra-Lee Furness, the discipline it takes to maintain his chiseled body, and his very public Zipline accident during his entrance atop the Sydney Opera House while taping “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” The two also talk about his Academy Award(R)-nominated performance in “Les Miserables,” the secret to his success, as well as his relationship with his mother, who left the family when he was just eight years old. Plus, Hugh’s wife Deborra joins the conversation. For a sneak peek of the episode (with embed code) click here: http://www.oprah.com/own-oprahs-next-chapter/First-Look-Hugh-Jackman-on-Oprahs-Next-Chapter-Video
Gloria Estefan (August 4)
Oprah sits down for a traditional Cuban-style lunch with seven-time Grammy Award winner Gloria Estefan, the most successful Latin crossover artist of all time, at Gloria’s home in Vero Beach, Florida. Oprah discusses Gloria’s upbringing as a Cuban exile, her iconic career and how she got the world listening to Latin music, developing some of music’s biggest stars including Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Shakira and Marc Anthony. She also shares her journey back from the bus crash in the 1990s that almost stopped her from ever performing again. Gloria is joined by Emilio Estefan, her husband of nearly 35 years and a 19-time Grammy Award winning musician and producer; 18-year-old daughter Emily Estefan; son Nayib Estefan, his wife Lara and their one-year-old son Sasha, the Estefan’s first grandchild; and Lili Estefan, the Estefan’s niece and a television host on Univision.
Cast of Lee Daniels’ The Butler (August 11)
Oprah sits down with fellow cast members from “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” including Academy Award-winner Forest Whitaker and David Oyelowo along with Academy Award-nominated director Lee Daniels to discuss the making of the highly anticipated feature film. They talk about filming in New Orleans with an all-star cast including John Cusack, Cuba Gooding Jr., Jane Fonda, Terrence Howard, Mariah Carey, Lenny Kravitz, Robin Williams, James Marsden, Alan Rickman, Vanessa Redgrave and Liev Schreiber and how they were able to depict the journey of one man, Cecil Gaines, who served eight presidents as the White House’s head butler.
Lindsay Lohan (August 18)
Oprah and actress Lindsay Lohan come together for an exclusive highly anticipated in-depth conversation.
Tina Turner (August 25)
Oprah travels to the South of France for an intimate conversation with rock and roll legend, Tina Turner. In the only interview following the iconic singer’s private wedding ceremony in Switzerland to longtime love Erwin Bach, Oprah joins Tina during a stop on their honeymoon, to talk love, retirement and her private life out of the spotlight.
September series premieres
“For Better or Worse” (Season three premieres Wednesday, September 18, two back-to-back half-hour episodes at 9 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. ET/PT)
Written, directed and executive produced by Tyler Perry, “For Better of Worse” centers on Angela Williams (Tasha Smith, “Why Did I Get Married Too?,” “Couples Retreat”), the owner of a successful beauty salon, and her husband of 13 years, Marcus (Michael Jai White, “Why Did I Get Married Too?,” “Spawn”). Marcus is a former professional football player who has recently partnered with Richard Ellington (Kent Faulcon, “American Beauty”) and Joseph Jetson (Jason Olive, “Raising Helen”) on a new sports news program called “C-Sports Now.” Marcus’s business relationship with Richard and Joseph is complicated, however, by the fact that Richard is dating Keisha (Kiki Haynes, “Nora’s Hair Salon”), Marcus’s ex-girlfriend and the mother of his teenage daughter. In addition, Joseph’s girlfriend, successful real estate agent Leslie (Crystle Stewart, Miss USA 2008), is Angela’s best friend. More often than not, the couples find it impossible to keep their business and private lives from mingling. The series is produced by Tyler Perry Studios.
“Six Little McGhees” (All new episodes premiere Saturday, September 7)
“Six Little McGhees” follows the inspirational lives of Mia and Rozonno McGhee as they juggle marriage, a family business and their six adorable two-year-olds. When Mia and Rozonno became parents to Columbus, Ohio’s first sextuplets, no amount of books or advice could have prepared them for life with multiples. Their close family and friend helpers made the infant years easier to manage, but as the children grow so will Mia and Rozonno’s parenting skills. The helpers won’t be around forever, and these parents are determined to grow more independent from their support team. With potty training and many other milestones soon on the way, and the task of managing a growing business, Mia and Rozonno are bracing for all the excitement and chaos of doing it on their own. In this brand new season, the kids suit up for swimming lessons and their first camping trip, while Mia and Rozonno work to find time for each other in the midst of all the happy chaos. With the terrible two’s in full swing, the toddler trouble continues. “Six Little McGhees” is produced for OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network by Candor Entertainment.
“Oprah’s LIfeclass” (All new episodes premiere Sunday, September 8 at 9 p.m. ET/PT)
New episodes of “Oprah’s Lifeclass” return in the fall featuring Bishop T.D. Jakes, who will join Oprah at MegaFest 2013 to continue the address the issues of fatherless sons and daughters as they focus on bringing families together, as well as researcher Dr. Brené Brown who joins Oprah to examine the power of vulnerability. The NAACP Image Award-winning series “Oprah’s Lifeclass” is a richly interactive worldwide social experience where millions of students participate in inspiring conversations with Oprah Winfrey on-air, online and via social media. For each class, Oprah is joined by a hand-picked expert, and together they interact with viewers to share principles and tools that can help people live more meaningful and fulfilling lives. “Oprah’s Lifeclass” is produced by Harpo Studios.
“Super Soul Sunday” (All new episodes premiere Sunday, September 22 at 11 a.m. ET/PT)
New episodes of “Super Soul Sunday” return in the fall featuring Mariel Hemingway and Bobby Williams from the OWN documentary “Running From Crazy,” New York Times bestselling author of “Help, Thanks, Wow” Anne Lamott, poet and philosopher Mark Nepo, pastor and New York Times bestselling author Rob Bell, Buddhist teacher Jack Kornfield, bestselling novelist of “Devotion” Dani Shapiro, and “The Art of War” and “The Legend of Bagger Vance” author Steven Pressfield. The Emmy Award-winning series “Super Soul Sunday” delivers a thought-provoking, eye-opening and inspiring block of programming designed to help viewers awaken to their best selves and discover a deeper connection to the world around them. “Super Soul Sunday” features exclusive interviews and all-new conversations between Oprah Winfrey and top thinkers, authors, filmmakers and spiritual leaders. Exploring themes and issues including happiness, personal fulfillment, wellness, spirituality and conscious living, “Super Soul Sunday” presents an array of perspectives on what it means to be alive in today’s world. “Super Soul Sunday” is produced by Harpo Studios.
New Series for 2014:
“It’s Prime’s Time” (working title)
“It’s Prime’s Time” (working title) is the hilarious and compelling real life story of Deion Sanders, the football legend, baseball great, broadcaster, Hall of Famer, international superstar, businessman, educator and father, as he strives to keep all the facets of his complicated, crazy and chaotic life in balance and under control. Deion faces the challenges of raising his five children in a household that also includes his mother, her foster children and his aunt and uncle, while guiding the future of Prime Prep Academy, the charter school he created to try to make a lasting impact on the lives of children in underserved areas. He plays the role of father, leader, bread-winner, coach and teacher for everyone around him. And in those rare instances when he gets a little overwhelmed, his girlfriend, producer and businesswoman Tracey Edmonds who has two sons of her own, is there to help pick up the slack. The series is produced by Edmonds Entertainment, Prime Time Media Ventures and Rogue Atlas Productions in association with Lionsgate. Executive producers are Eli Frankel, Tracey E. Edmonds and Deion Sanders.