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acquires all rights to 'The Black List' specials; to air in Black History
(November 24, 2011) TV One has acquired from Freemind Ventures the highly acclaimed, award-winning three-part documentary series The Black List, in which a remarkable group of 50 black American notables share candid stories and revealing insights into the struggles, triumphs and joys of the black experience in America.
The Black List documentaries are a collaboration between celebrated portrait photographer and filmmaker Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, who directs, and award-winning journalist Elvis Mitchell, who interviews the talented and diverse collection of individuals. The Black List: Volume 1 debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in 2008, and all three films originally debuted on HBO. TV One will host the basic cable debut of the three-part series in February 2012 during Black History Month.
The purchase includes all of the assets and rights relating to The Black List films, including home video distribution, domain names and Internet content, educational materials associated with the project, with the sole exception of The Black List individual portraiture photographs taken by Greenfield-Sanders, although the network is licensed to use the photographs when they are included in the other materials.
The series play on the negative connotation historically associated with the word "black" and "blacklist," which refers to people who have incurred suspicion or disapproval, by putting together a diverse group of highly successful individuals who come from the worlds of politics, music, business, literature, community activism, the arts, medicine and athletics, and letting them tell their powerful stories. Those included in the series include Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Sean Combs, Richard Parsons, Colin Powell, Mahlon Duckett, Lou Gossett, Jr., Bill T. Jones, Vernon Jordan, Marc Morial, Toni Morrison, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Chris Rock, John Legend, Al Sharpton, Dr. Valerie Montgomery Rice and Faye Wattleton, among many others.
"The Black List is an important work that seeks to redefine the terms black and blacklist for the world," said TV One President and CEO Wonya Lucas. "There is no better home for The Black List than TV One as we seek to share the depth and the breadth of the Black experience with the broadest audience possible."
In essence a kind of living portraiture, the documentary series was created as part of a remarkable project that ultimately included a book of portraits, and a traveling museum exhibit. The first exhibit of all 50 portraits has recently opened at a National Portrait Gallery exhibition sponsored by AT&T in Washington, DC, and TV One has provided the museum with access to footage from the documentaries to enhance the exhibition.
The Black List is produced by Elvis Mitchell, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders and Michael Slap Sloane, with Christopher McKee, Scott Richman, Payne Brown, Tommy Walker serving as executive producers.
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