For the first time in MTV’s history, the cable network will televise in black-and-white as it airs a range of perspectives on race by musicians, politicians and audience members on Monday.
The initiative, social-media-branded #TheTalk, will feature commentary from musicians (both black and white) such as Kendrick Lamar, Common, Big Sean, Pete Wentz and Jordin Sparks, alongside actor Penn Badgely, Selma director Ava DuVernay and star David Oyelowo and politicians such as U.S. senators Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, the Georgia Democrat who was part of Martin Luther King’s inner circle during the events depicted in Selma.
#TheTalk is part of a broader MTV initiative, the anti-bias campaign Look Different, which launched last April. The programming is designed to encourage MTV’s audience to “have candid, confident and ‘color brave’ conversations on race with family and friends,” the company said in a release.
The programming will run in black and white for 12 hours beginning at 9 am (ET/PT) on Martin Luther King Day. The network will also push out related programming on its mobile and digital platforms, and share material from audience members and online followers.