Powerhouse Hollywood producer couple ink multiyear development deal with BET Networks.
Powerhouse husband-and-wife production team Salim and Mara Brock Akil have inked a multiyear deal with BET Networks, bringing their brand of creative, classy, culturally relevant television to the most watched Black network in the world. The Akils are the executive producers and creators of The Game, a show whose rebirth on BET—after being dropped by another network—attracted 7.7 million viewers, cementing its place in cable TV history as the most-watched sitcom ever.
Loretha Jones, BET's President of Original Programming, News and Public Affairs, said she was thrilled by the merger between the network and Akil Productions: "Through this partnership we hope to continue to bring our audience high-quality content that reflects their lives and our communities."
The three-year deal has the Akils creating original scripted series for BET, ensuring that the high production quality of shows like Girlfriends and The Game will be coming once again to a screen near you. "BET has provided us with a tremendous platform to create smart, funny and dramatic quality programming with multilayered and multidimensional characters appealing to millions of viewers," the Akils said in a joint statement.
Akil Productions is winning all around, as the Salim Akil–directed film Jumping the Broom is currently the No. 3 movie in the country, garnering an estimated $15.2 million in its opening week.
The news is sure to excite diehard fans of The Game and may even quell cultural critics who complain that there just isn't enough programming on TV showing the scope of the Black experience as we live it. Stay tuned.