A&E NETWORK GREENLIGHTS DOCUMENTARY PROGRAMMING EVENTS "RIGHT TO OFFEND: THE BLACK COMEDY REVOLUTION" (WT) AND "SECRET ORIGINS OF HIP HOP" FEATURING BUSTA RHYMES, EVE, FAT JOE, GRANDMASTER FLASH, ICE-T AND MORE

A&E NETWORK GREENLIGHTS DOCUMENTARY PROGRAMMING EVENTS
“RIGHT TO OFFEND: THE BLACK COMEDY REVOLUTION” (WT) AND
“SECRET ORIGINS OF HIP HOP” FEATURING BUSTA RHYMES, EVE, FAT JOE, GRANDMASTER FLASH, ICE-T AND MORE

TWO-PART EVENT “RIGHT TO OFFEND”
TRACES THE HISTORY OF BLACK COMEDY AS A MEDIUM
OF POWERFUL SOCIAL COMMENTARY

EIGHT-PART “SECRET ORIGINS OF HIP HOP” EXAMINES THE MOMENTS THAT SHAPED SOME OF THE GENRE’S MOST ICONIC STARS THROUGH THEIR OWN EYES

New York, NY – March 3, 2021 – A&E Network has greenlit two new documentary events – “Right to Offend: The Black Comedy Revolution” (wt) and “Secret Origins of Hip Hop”– adding to the network’s robust slate of nonfiction storytelling. “Right to Offend” explores the evolution of black comedy and comedians who have used pointed humor to expose, challenge and ridicule society’s injustices and to articulate the black experience in America. From Redd Foxx and Moms Mabley during the civil rights movement, to Richard Pryor in the 70s, to groundbreaking modern-day comedians and creators like Chris Rock, Jamie Foxx and Lena Waithe, the documentary explores the rare position these people and many more hold in our society. “Secret Origins of Hip Hop” from Mass Appeal (“Wu-Tang Clan: Of Mics and Men”, “Rapture”) follows some of hip hop’s biggest stars, including Busta Rhymes, Eve, Fat Joe Grandmaster Flash and Ice-T, as they share the stories and events that molded them into the artists they became. Collaborators, friends, family and the artists themselves will take viewers to where their stories began and trace the hidden moments that shaped their artistic points of view.

Across four hours, “Right to Offend” explores black comedy through a unique lens, tracing the evolution and social awakening of the courageous comedians who dared to push against the social constraints of their time and spoke truth to power. ​Featuring interviews with some of the greatest comedy minds of all time as well as a rich collection of archival comedy material, the two-part event reveals the personal stories and tribulations faced by many black performers in attaining greater acceptance and opening the doors for a true representation of the black experience.

In each one-hour episode, “Secret Origins of Hip Hop” delves into the inspiring origin story of one of hip hop’s iconic stars including hip hop veteran Busta Rhymes, rapper and actress Eve, one of the genre’s first Latino superstars Fat Joe, pioneer DJ Grandmaster Flash, cultural icon Ice-T and more. In intimate interviews, each artist will reflect on the moments that shaped them, the obstacles they have overcome, and the lessons learned along the way. The series further brings these stories to life with rare archival footage, interviews with the artists’ friends and families and the music they created that has helped define the genre. “Secret Origins of Hip Hop” is narrated by the renowned rapper Nas.

“Secret Origins of Hip Hop” is produced by Mass Appeal for A&E Network. Peter Bittenbender and Slane Hatch serve as executive producers for Mass Appeal. Elaine Frontain Bryant and Brad Abramson serve as executive producers for A&E. 

“Right to Offend: The Black Comedy Revolution” (wt) is produced by TIME Studios for A&E Network. Mario Diaz and Jessica Sherif are co-directors and executive producers. Ian Orefice serves as executive producer for Time Studios. Elaine Frontain Bryant and Brad Abramson serve as executive producers for A&E.

About A&E Network
A&E leads the cultural conversation through high-quality, thought provoking original programming with a unique point of view. Whether it’s the network’s distinctive brand of award-winning disruptive reality or groundbreaking documentary, A&E always makes entertainment an art.  The A&E website is located at aetv.com.  Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/aetv and Facebook at facebook.com/AETV.  For more press information and photography please visit us at press.aenetworks.com.      

About TIME Studios
TIME Studios is the Emmy award-winning television and film division of TIME, the global media brand that reaches a combined audience of more than 100 million around the world. Built on the foundation of TIME’s award-winning visual journalism, which has earned over 55 major awards and nominations in the last seven years, as well as 577 million video streams across all platforms in 2019, Emmy-winning TIME Studios harnesses the access and authority of one of the world’s most trusted and respected brands to bring premium truth-based programming to television and film around the world, while continuing to push the boundaries of journalism and visual storytelling through new cutting-edge mediums including virtual reality and augmented reality.

About Mass Appeal
Mass Appeal is an entertainment company dedicated to telling stories from the perspective of those who shape and shift culture. Since 1996, we have documented the emerging movements that influence popular ideas. Today, Mass Appeal is the elevated voice of Hip Hop and its ever-expanding sphere of influence. Integrated offerings in content, music and creative services stoke Mass Appeal’s ability to maximize the impact of our output. Our diverse school of thought separates us from friends and foes alike.

 

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