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Oprah Winfrey hosting A-list stars for town hall meeting on race

Frequent Oprah Winfrey collaborator Ava DuVernay will power the town hall meeting. (Photo credit: Bang Media)

Oprah Winfrey is leveraging the mega platform of her television network to facilitate a town hall meeting about the current racial turmoil simmering in America.

The forum — “OWN Spotlight: Where Do We Go From Here?” — will feature an august body of politicians, entertainers, educators and civic leaders who will weigh in on the insurrection erupting in the weeks since George Floyd’s death.

Winfrey has invited the likes of former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, Oscar-nominated director Ava DuVernay, New York Times writer Charles M. Blow, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, historian and author Ibram Kendi, Selma actor David Oyelowo, Color of Change president Rashad Robinson, and NAACP national board member the Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

In a statement obtained by The Hollywood Reporter and other media outlets, Winfrey explained why she decided to take the many intimate phone calls she was having on the current insurrection in America and place them on a bigger stage.

“I’ve been having private conversations with friends and thought leaders about what’s next and where we go from here. I thought it would be both of interest and service to bring their ideas, concerns and comments into a national spotlight,” she said.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

The two-night town hall forum will air on Tuesday, June 9, 2020, and continue on Wednesday, June 10, on OWN. It will also be telecast simultaneously on 18 of Discovery’s other stations, including TLC, The Discovery Channel and HGTV, according to The Reporter.

How the program is received and performs in the Nielsen ratings will be interesting. Winfrey created controversy for hosting TV specials on accused pedophiles Michael Jackson and R. Kelly in 2019.