Maybe it shouldn’t be a huge surprise, after a star of and key player in the series, Tracee Ellis Ross, suddenly exited from BET’s Reed Between The Lines, over a year ago.
At the time, BET said that the series would continue on without her, as Tony Rock, Charlie Robinson and Michole White were added to the series’ cast as regulars, with star Malcolm-Jamal Warner.
Ellis Ross did hint that there was a chance that she might return, and that we shouldn’t be surprised if her character does. As she said, “I love Reed Between the Lines, I believe in it. There is a chance I’ll go back, always. There’s nothing weird about it.“
We can officially put a nail in that coffin, because BET has officially canceled Reed Between The Lines, according to Deadline, who also add that the network has already ordered a second season of its freshman drama Being Mary Jane, even though its first season hasn’t even debuted yet. It’s slated to begin airing as a regular series during the first half of 2014.
Although maybe it too shouldn’t come as a surprise, since, despite a late 10:30pm start on a Tuesday night, the BET movie pilot for Being Mary Jane, which stars Gabrielle Union, drew a strong 4 million viewers and a 2.0 rating with adults 18-49, making it that July night’s highest rated cable TV show, and the 2nd highest rated show on all of TV, behind NBC’s America’s Got Talent in the same target demo (adults 18-49).
Congrats to Mara Brock & Salim Akil, as well as the audience who tuned in to watch, and helped BET execs make the decision to order the drama to series, and now, given them the confidence to order a second season, even though the first hasn’t aired yet.
BET’s 2013/2014 TV season will also include Let’s Stay Together which is returning for a 4th season.
In terms of new series in development, expect a new reality TV series titled Burns BBQ, from A Smith and Co Productions, which revolves around a family barbecue business changing hands from one generation to the next.
It’ll debut in quarter 2 of 2014.
A new talk-show hosted by Bishop T.D. Jakes, titled Mind, Body & Soul, will air on Sundays, starting this fall, and will tackle a variety of topics, including spiritual, mental and physical wellness, as well as finance and relationships.
BET also announced that it has revived its stand-up comedy series, Comic View, which will return this fall.
The two half-hour comedy series produced by Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios have both been picked up by BET’s spin-off adult network, Centric: The First Family, a sitcom about an African American family that resides in The White House; and Mr. Box Office, a sitcom about the biggest movie star in the world who is sentenced to community service, teaching English at the “toughest” high school in America…
The First Family cast includes Christopher P. Duncan (The Jamie Foxx Show) as President William Johnson; Kellita Smith as First Lady Katherine Johnson; Gladys Knight as his mother; Marla Gibbs as the First Lady’s mother; Paul Rodriguez as Dictator Rafael; and Jackee Harry as the First Lady’s sister.
Mr Box Office stars Bill Bellamy (as Mr Box Office), Tim Meadows, Vivica A. Fox, former NBA star/actor Rick Fox, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Jon Lovitz (SNL) and Gary Busey.
Pilots for each were shot last year, as we announced.