An original miniseries based on the iconic 1980s R&B/ pop group New Edition is set at BET Networks, with Real Husbands Of Hollywood’s Jesse Collins executive producing through his Jesse Collins Entertainment banner, in association with New Edition Enterprises. New Edition members Ricky Bell, Michael Bivins, Ronnie DeVoe, Johnny Gill and Ralph Tresvant are co-producers. Shooting is set to begin after the first of the year for premiere in 2016.
The untitled three-night miniseries is the first scripted music-focused TV movie to air on BET and falls under a multi-year first-look development deal Collins signed with BET Networks last spring. New Edition’s longtime manager Brooke Payne also will serve as a co-producer. Abdul Williams (Lottery Ticket) will pen the script. A search is underway for a director.
“It’s been a long time coming and that time is finally here! Now that we have signed the deal, New Edition’s journey will be captured in a three-night miniseries to tell our life story through our very own eyes. We are happy to have New Edition Enterprises collaborate with BET Networks’ Debra Lee and Stephen Hill along with Jesse Collins Entertainment,” said New Edition. “From our beginning in the Orchard Park Projects in Boston to Hollywood and everything in between, just like The Temptations and The Jackson Five—we are ready to retrace our footsteps and show everyone how we got here. For the fans all over the world, this one’s for you.”
The band, formed in Boston in 1978, reached the height of its popularity in the 1980s with hits such as “Candy Girl,” “Cool It Now” and “Mr. Telephone Man.” The group is credited with kicking off the boy band movement of the ‘80s and ‘90s’, leading the way for groups like New Kids on the Block, The Boys, Boys II Men, Hi-Five, Backstreet Boys and NSYNC.
“Personally, my relationship with New Edition goes back to being among the first to play ‘Candy Girl’ on my college radio station, so I’m ecstatic that BET is the place where the guys wanted to come to tell their complete, dynamic story,” said Stephen Hill, President of Programming, BET Networks. “Everyone’s been waiting for the New Edition saga to be told in all its triumphs and heartbreaks and we can’t wait to bring it to the screen.”
“New Edition’s music is woven into the fabric of our culture,” said Collins. “When I brought the idea to BET years ago, I wanted to create a film that would tell the story of how New Edition emerged into one of the most important groups of its generation. I am so grateful that Stephen Hill and his team are giving Jesse Collins Entertainment the opportunity to chronicle the lives of these music icons”.
Collins is repped by ICM Partners, Niles Kirchner Management and Bloom, Hergott, Diemer & Rosenthal. Bell, Bivins, DeVoe, Gill and Tresvant are repped by ICM Partners and Gordon Bobb at Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein & Lezcano. Williams is repped by UTA, Bonnie Berry LaMon at B2L Entertainment Law Group and Brad Kaplan at Primary Wave.