Following the three-night premiere of Lifetime's sequel to Surviving R. Kelly, the national anti-sexual violence organization RAINN (Rape Abuse and Incest National Network) reports that phone calls to its hotline spiked by 40% during the time that the series aired.
Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning debuted last Thursday (Jan. 2) and concluded its season finale on Saturday (Jan. 4).
The investigative series recapped the ensuing legal saga of disgraced R&B singer R. Kelly, who is facing numerous state and federal charges following the original 2019 series. The 52-year-old has remained behind bars since he was arrested by the Chicago police last July as he awaits his first trial in April 2020.
Spread across five episodes, Surviving R. Kelly Part II delved into the decades of allegations that have long shadowed the singer’s career. The series featured more stories from survivors, as well as commentary from psychologists, legal experts, journalists and cultural critics.
“The Friday and Saturday after ‘Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning’ aired, RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Hotline experienced a 40% increase in calls,” said the organization’s press secretary, Erinn Robinson, obtained by Variety. “We are proud to have partnered with Lifetime on this project and are encouraged that our work with the media continues to empower survivors of sexual violence to seek the help that they need to heal.”
Brie Miranda Bryant, Lifetime’s senior vice president of unscripted development and programming, said in a statement to Variety that “it’s amazing to know the documentary has encouraged important and necessary conversations to happen and we are extremely proud of our survivors for their courage, who by standing up for themselves, stand for so much more.”
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