New York, NY – February 1, 2021– BET debuts two new projects during Black History Month under its media-focused initiative “Content For Change,” “BET and CBS News Present: Boiling Point” and investigative documentary series “Disrupt & Dismantle” with award-winning journalist, speaker, author, and philanthropist Soledad O’Brien.
Soledad O’Brien’s critically acclaimed 2011 series Black in America took a long, hard look at the challenges faced by Black people in our country. A decade later, the challenges continue to manifest in our everyday lives, and O’Brien is back to explore immediate action items that need to be accomplished to make a change NOW with the new BET original series “Disrupt & Dismantle.” Airing on the same night, “Boiling Point” will explore Black America’s longstanding struggle for racial justice and equality through CBS News’ archival content, original interviews and never-before-seen footage of dramatic flashpoints in history – including George Wallace’s Stand in the Schoolhouse Door, Bloody Sunday in Selma, the Attica Prison Uprising, L.A. Riots, Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the killing of George Floyd and beyond. Each event gripped the nation and motivated Black Americans to fight for change. “Boiling Point” and “Disrupt & Dismantle,” debut Sunday, February 21, starting at 8 PM ET/PT, with new installments airing every Sunday on BET and BET Her.
“Boiling Point” premieres Sunday, February 21 at 8 PM ET/PT
Have we come to a moment of reckoning, an overdue awakening on systemic racism? Sparked by the horrific death of George Floyd, protesters took to the streets across the nation, demanding accountability and change in policing. Yet, the current movements against police brutality, voter suppression, segregated schools, environmental racism and mass incarceration unfortunately are not new. For decades, Black Americans have been fighting for America to live up to its ideals. This six-part series, “Boiling Point,” will explore these powerful through lines that bridge our country’s past and present with each episode exploring dramatic flashpoints in American history – George Wallace’s Stand in the Schoolhouse Door, Bloody Sunday in Selma, the Attica Prison Uprising, L.A. Riots, Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and the killing of George Floyd. These events set the stage for the current civil rights battles of today.
Through the use of original interviews and compelling archival footage, “Boiling Point” will show how far Black Americans have come and the battle lines that remain today, while acknowledging the brave everyday American heroes, past and present who have fought for progress. Each hour-long episode will be driven by never-before-seen footage drawn from the unparalleled CBS News archives. Along this journey, the viewer will also witness the evolution of television journalism in covering civil rights stories, including the rise of the evening news, the dawn of the home movie/caught-on-tape era and finally, the cellphone camera/social media revolution. The special will feature first-person witnesses and participants, family, reporters on the scene, thought leaders, legislators and current activists including Andrew Young, journalist Wesley Lowery, Professor Hasan Kwame Jeffries, journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, Professor Carol Anderson, Rev. Raymond Scott, Professor Ibram X. Kendi, Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon, Professor Jody Armour, Professor Marc Lamont Hill, activist LaTosha Brown, Professor Michael Eric Dyson, retired Lt. General Russel Honoré and others.
“BET and CBS News Present: Boiling Point,” will hyper-focus on the below six life-changing moments for Black Americans:
- A. Riots:The acquittal of four officers in the Rodney King beating trial that lit a firestorm of unrest and rang the alarm on a troubling history of excessive force by police (1992)
- Bloody Sunday:The assault on civil rights marchers in Selma, Alabama that galvanized public opinion and mobilized Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act (1965)
- Attica:The violent inmate uprising that exposed a broken system of incarceration in America (1971)
- Hurricane Katrina:The natural disaster that sparked questions and a bitter uproar about how race and class may have influenced the government’s response to the crisis (2005)
- Stand in the Schoolhouse Door:The defiant attempt by Governor Wallace to stop Black students from enrolling at the University of Alabama that laid bare divisions over desegregation (1963)
- George Floyd:The terrible and tragic killing of George Floyd that sparked the largest wave of protests in American history, strengthening long-standing calls for greater police accountability and improving the relationship between police and the communities they serve.
“Boiling Point,” is executive produced by Jason Samuels for BET and Mitch Weitzner for CBS News.