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TV One sets "12 Years a Slave" special

By Rich Heldenfels Published: October 28, 2013

The official word: TV One announced today that it will premiere 12 Years A Slave: A TV One Special with Cathy Hughes, a one hour program featuring a discussion with the film’s director Steve McQueen and cast members Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nyong’o and Alfre Woodard. Set in pre-Civil War era America, 12 Years A Slave is based on the true story of Solomon Northup (played by Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York who was kidnapped and sold into slavery. The special will air Saturday, November 9 at 7 PM/ET exclusively on TV One.

“As part of our commitment to serve the African American community with programming that inspires conversation, this emotional special serves a dual mission,” said Hughes, Radio One Founder and Chairperson. “At once generating awareness about this painful and brilliantly executed story, the special is also bound to ignite critical cultural retrospection among our viewers.”


Hughes will engage her guests in disclosing the emotional transformations they underwent in portraying the black experience during this particularly troubling and shameful period in American history. Additionally, the special offers viewers a thought provoking look into the making of the film, the graphic historical perspective it provides, and the anticipated impact it will have on the African American community. Finally, the program will provide a forum for British director McQueen (Shame, Hunger), British actor Ejiofor (Salt, American Gangster) and Kenyan actress Nyong’o to share their insights from a collectively non-American perspective.

12 Years A Slave has debuted at select film festivals in the U.S. and Canada and opened in limited U.S. release October 18, 2013. The Fox Searchlight Pictures film has won honors including the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival “People’s Choice Award,” and the 2013 Hollywood Film Festival “Breakthrough Award” (Breakthrough Directing, Steve McQueen) and “New Hollywood Award” (Lupita Nyong’o).


Cathy Hughes is the Founder and Chairperson of Radio One, Inc., the largest African American owned and operated broadcast-company in the nation. Radio One is the parent corporation of TV One, a partnership with Comcast, and Syndication One, the media home of Rev. Al Sharpton, Yolanda Adams, Russ Parr, Rickey Smiley, Lonnie Hunter and James Fortune, as well as Reach Media, the home of the Tom Joyner Morning Show, Music One, home of Harpist Jeff Majors, Interactive One, home of Black Planet, NewsOne and Hello Beautiful, plus Distribution One where CD’s and DVD’s are marketed. Radio One is also the first African American company in radio history to dominate several major markets simultaneously and possesses the first woman-owned radio station to rank #1 in any major market. Radio One is now a public company, making Cathy Hughes the first, and only, African American woman to chair a publicly held corporation. As Radio One continues to expand its media presence, the foundation has remained based on the spirit of family and commitment to the community.

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