BET was formally launched in January 1980 because the brainchild of a former lobbyist of the cable tv business, Bob Johnson. The community supplied a platform for folks of shade to showcase their expertise in music, leisure, politics, and the general tradition at a time when networks like MTV gave solely a handful of black artists any shine.
Today, BET has developed to turn into a number one community – with content material in music movies, award reveals, and social conversations – and celebrates 40 years of success. In honor of such a feat, listed here are 4 memorable moments within the community’s historical past.
Mo’Nique opens BET Awards with Beyoncé choreography
Years earlier than her Oscar-winning efficiency in Precious, Mo’Nique was referred to as a humorist and star of the hit UPN sequence, The Parkers. She’d hosted a number of comedy specials that aired on cable tv and straight to DVD movies however in 2003, she confirmed off her internet hosting abilities on a bigger scale when she was tapped to host the BET Awards.
She did so effectively that she was invited again because the host the next yr. She shocked the world, and Beyoncé, when she opened the present performing the choreography to Beyoncé’s hit single “Crazy In Love.” Beyonce rose to her ft and clapped in pleasure as Mo’Nique slayed on stage.
The efficiency was stored underneath wraps as Mo’Nique and her background dancers rehearsed the opening for over a month upfront of the present. It grew to become probably the most talked-about second of the present that yr and went down as top-of-the-line moments in BET historical past. She returned in 2007 with one other Beyoncé tribute.
R. Kelly’s interview with Touré Roberts
Kelly could also be in jail now for his alleged intercourse crimes however up till 2019, he was a free man. Ed Gordon first interviews Kelly in 2002 on the kid pornography fees towards him on the time. Kelly denied each allegation, together with refusing to speak about his marriage to an underage Aaliyah and instructed Gordon flat out, “I am not a monster.”
In 2008, Kelly was interviewed by Touré for BET on the shut of his little one pornography trial. , and Touré requested him, “Do you like teenage girls?” Kelly famously replied, “When you say teenage, how old are we talking?”
“I was dumbfounded,” Touré admitted in a 2017 piece he wrote for the Daily Beast. “I thought of that as pretty much an admission. He was so unable to just say no that he truly did not know what to say and responded by asking me a dumb question.”
Touré says the interview aired on BET solely as soon as as a result of Kelly’s workforce demanded it by no means air once more. To this present day, the complete interview is nearly unattainable to be discovered.
BET revives ‘The Game’ after cancelation on The CW
The in style spin-off of Girlfriends ran for 3 profitable seasons on The CW. Fans had been outraged that the present was not picked up for a fourth season and attributed the cancelation to the community missing variety and ridding its programming of all content material that featured primarily a black forged.
After a two yr hiatus, BET picked up the sequence for its 2011 season after the community’s profitable syndication acquisition in 2009 and an amazing request from followers for the present to return. BET picked up the place The CW left off two years later because the fictional San Diego soccer workforce loved the success of being a Superbowl successful franchise and navigated life at house with the ladies of their lives.
The present aired for a further six seasons on BET and went from a half-hour comedy to an hour dramedy. Other stars had been added into the fold, together with Brandy, Lauren London, and Jay Ellis.
For centuries, gospel music has been the muse and core of black tradition and BET took executives took notice and determined to make it an integral a part of its programming. BET Gospel launched as a spin-off station of the community in 2002 and offers gospel and inspirational music and programming.
Since the BET Awards inception in 2001, a Gospel artist has at all times carried out and likewise has its personal designated class. BET Gospel has turn into its personal model in its entirety with programming that features the annual award present BET’S Celebration of Gospel, the faith-based actuality singing competitors Sunday’s Best, the fact sequence The Mann Family, and the weekly speak present Lift Every Voice and Sing to call a couple of.
Congrats to BET on 40 years of black tv and cheers to 40 extra!