Because of Peacock’s modest, U.S.-only reach so far (It has more than 28 million monthly active accounts and 13 million paid subscribers), its shows have never made the Nielsen Top 10 weekly streaming rankings. At its newfront today, the NBCUniversal streamer is announcing that new drama Bel-Air is the platform’s most-streamed original series, reaching 8 million accounts to date, and has broken Peacock’s records for new subscribers, usage, and upgrades.
Peacock originally landed Bel-Air, a drama retelling of WIll Smith’s Fresh Prince of Bel-Air sitcom, with a two-season order. Former Queen Sugar showrunner Anthony Sparks is joining the upcoming second season as an executive producer, working alongside executive producers/co-showrunners TJ Brady and Rasheed Newson. Season 2 is slated to return in 2023, with Smith continuing as an executive producer following the Oscar controversy.
Bel-Air was the most heavily promoted Peacock original series to date and was showcased during NBC’s Feb. 13 broadcast of the Super Bowl. The series premiered with three episodes on Super Bowl Sunday, with new episodes released subsequently weekly on Thursdays.
“We’re elated at the positive response to Bel-Air and that this passionate audience quickly solidified the series into the cultural zeitgeist,” said Susan Rovner, Chairman, Entertainment Content, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. “Week after week Bel-Air captivated audiences with buzzy cliffhangers and stunning ensemble performances, led by the unmatched Jabari Banks. We can’t wait for what’s in store for season two.”
Peacock President Kelly Campbell revealed that Bel-Air is “the third biggest title on the platform.” She did not elaborate what the two shows ahead of it are but off-network hits Yellowstone and The Office are believed to be at the top.
“The incredible performance of Bel-Air really demonstrates the power of culture-defining content,” Campbell said. “Bel-Air is our most-streamed Peacock Original series and the third biggest title on the platform, breaking records for customer acquisition, viewership, and upgrades. We strategically launched the series in February amid two of the biggest sporting events, the Olympics and Super Bowl, making Bel-Air a cornerstone of our most-streamed month in Peacock history. We couldn’t be more excited to dive deeper into this story next season.”
Inspired by pilot director and executive producer Morgan Cooper’s viral trailer, Bel-Air takes a raw approach to this world of swagger, style, and aspiration, while exploring Will’s complex journey from the streets of West Philadelphia to the gated mansions of Bel-Air through a current lens.
The new series introduces Jabari Banks as Will. Its cast also includes Adrian Holmes as “Phillip Banks”, Cassandra Freeman as “Vivian Banks”, Olly Sholotan as “Carlton Banks”, Coco Jones as “Hilary Banks”, Akira Akbar as “Ashley Banks”, Jimmy Akingbola as “Geoffrey”, Jordan L. Jones as “Jazz” and Simone Joy Jones as “Lisa”. Bel-Air is produced by Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group, and Westbrook Studios.
“We see a lot of reboots in today’s television landscape, and yet there’s something undeniably singular, relevant and contemporary about this take on a beloved fan-favorite,” said Pearlena Igbokwe, Chairman, Universal Studio Group. “We knew Bel-Air would push the boundaries of possibility for IP adaptation, and we’re thrilled to celebrate its success with Peacock.”
Sparks next has Mike Tyson Hulu limited series Iron Mike. He’s repped by Paradigm, Literate and Jackoway Austen Tyerman.
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