With Black History Month approaching, it’s no surprise that networks are busy creating special programming to celebrate Black culture and reflect upon its complex history. Leading the way with a lineup dubbed “Creators of Cool,” TV One is among the first to announce their latest campaign, packed with a little something for everyone, including new episodes of its signature and award-winning series “Unsung;” the highly-anticipated premiere of Radio One founder and chairperson Cathy Hughes’ original movie, MEDIA; the live telecast of the 48th NAACP Image Awards hosted by Emmy Award-nominated actor Anthony Anderson and so much more. For a breakdown of what’s to come, keep reading.
Live Weekdays: 7-8 a.m. EST
Hosted by award-winning journalist Roland S. Martin, this daily news programming focuses on the issues that impact the Black community, from politics and public policy to entertainment and beyond.
Season 10: New Episodes Wednesdays at 8 p.m. EST
Premiere Dates: Feb. 1 (Case), Feb, 8 (Dave Hollister), Feb. 15 (After 7), Feb. 22 (Tribute to James Brown)
Through first-hand accounts, interviews with family and friends, and archival footage, each episode of TV One’s signature series weaves a tale of the highs and lows of a life in the limelight. The poignant stories of Unsung offer insight into the trials and triumphs faced by musical artists in both private and public forums. Season 10 continues during the month of February with episodes featuring Case, Dave Hollister, After 7 and a special tribute to the legendary Godfather of Soul, James Brown.
ORIGINAL SPECIALS and MOVIES:
“A NewsOne Now Primetime Special: Excellence in Black Hollywood”
Wednesday, Feb. 8 at 9 p.m. EST
Tune in as “NewsOne Now” managing editor and host Roland S. Martin sits down with John Legend, Issa Rae and other members of the Black Hollywood community to discuss entertainment, culture and the Black experience in television and film.
“The 48th NAACP Image Awards”
Live Red Carpet Pre-Show: Saturday, Feb. 11 at 7:30 p.m. EST
Live Telecast: Saturday, Feb. 11 at 9-11 p.m. EST
Hosted by “Black-ish” patriarch Anthony Anderson, the NAACP Image Awards celebrates the accomplishments of people of color in the fields of television, music, literature and film and also honors individuals or groups who promote social justice through creative endeavors. The nominees include Beyoncé, Solange Knowles, Viola Davis, Kevin Hart, Issa Rae, Chance the Rapper, Kendrick Lamar, Kerry Washington, Donald Glover, Nate Parker, Omari Hardwick, Anika Noni Rose and Sterling K. Brown among others. Additionally, LeBron R. James will receive the NAACP Jackie Robinson Sports Award and Harvard Law professor Charles J. Ogletree Jr. will receive the Chairman’s Award.
Saturday, Feb. 25 at 8 p.m. EST
“MEDIA” focuses on the Jones family, who owns and operates JUMP, a dynasty that has dominated the national urban media scene for years. Between affairs and conspiracies, backdoor deals, fierce rivalries and even murder, the Jones family is doing everything they can to stop anyone or anything trying to tear them apart. “MEDIA” stars Penny Johnson Jerald, Brian White, Gary Dourdan, Stephen Bishop, Pooch Hall, Chrystee Pharris, Denise Boutte, Finesse Mitchell and Blue Kimble. The original movie is executive produced by Radio One Founder and Chairperson Cathy Hughes with showrunner/writer Kevin Arkadie (“New York Undercover,” “Soul Food,” “The Shield.”
DOCUMENTARY AND MOVIE PREMIERES:
Soul Food Junkies
Sunday, Feb. 5 at 11 a.m. EST
Encores: Sunday, Feb. 12 at 3 p.m. EST
Filmmaker Byron Hurt sets out on a historical and culinary journey to learn more about the soul food tradition and its relevance to Black cultural identity. Through candid interviews with soul food cooks, historians, and scholars, the film puts this culinary tradition under the microscope to examine both its positive and negative consequences.
The Watsons go to Birmingham
Sunday, Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. EST
Encores: Sunday, Feb. 19 at 5 p.m. and 11 p.m. EST
Directed by Kenny Leon (“The Wiz Live!,” “Hairspray Live!”), This Hallmark Channel original movie is set in the Summer of 1963. Daniel (Wood Harris) and Wilona Watson (Anika Noni Rose) take their three kids on a road trip from Flint, Michigan to Birmingham, Alabama to spend the summer with Grandma Sands (LaTanya Richardson Jackson) and her friend, Mr. Robert (David Alan Grier) who show them around town. The Watsons discover that life is very different there than in Flint — and not necessarily for the better. During that historic summer, the Watsons find themselves caught up in a historic milestone of the Civil Rights Movement.
You Belong to Me: Sex Race and Murder in the South
Monday, Feb. 20 at 7 p.m. EST
Encores: Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 1 a.m. ET and Thursday, Feb. 23 at 8 p.m. EST
The story of Ruby McCollum, a prominent Black woman who killed a White doctor in Florida after suffering years of sexual abuse tied to practices in the Jim Crow South.