“More voices will join the chorus of young girls and women” speaking out against the singer, Brie Bryant said at The Hollywood Reporter’s Power 100 Women in Entertainment event.
Just a couple hours after The Hollywood Reporter broke details of Lifetime’s Surviving R. Kelly follow-up, the network’s senior vp unscripted development and programming Brie Bryant explained why it was necessary: “Unfortunately, the story is not done.”
Speaking at The Hollywood Reporter’s Power 100 Women in Entertainment event presented by Lifetime, Bryant said “more voices will join the chorus of young girls and women” in Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning, which will debut in January and run for three consecutive nights.
She went on to talk about the impact of the first documentary, watched by more than 26.8 million people and streamed by another 26 million. It also was nominated for a Primetime Emmy.
“Following the premiere, there was a surge in sex abuse hotlines, Twitter ignited, Saturday Night Live made a seven-minute opening skit, there were demands for actions, a few federal agencies became involved … and later, multiple federal indictments. And just like that, The conversation became inclusive,” she said.
The continuation features interviews from a variety of perspectives — including new survivors, supporters, music industry insiders (Damon Dash, Mathew Knowles, Jimmy Maynes), activists (#MeToo Founder Tarana Burke) and many others, such as W. Kamau Bell, Sheryl Lee Ralph Angela Yee, Gloria Allred and State’s Attorney for Cook Country Kimberly M. Foxx.
In her remarks, Bryant praised those survivors and parents who took part in the first documentary with their allegations against R. Kelly, who is currently awaiting 2020 trial for multiple charges of sexual abuse and misconduct in a Chicago correctional center.
“Without the guts to become uncomfortable, to live in a state of unease and unrest, but to continue to provide raw honesty, we might not have ignited this global conversation,” she said. “Without the belief that despite all the consequences, every girl and woman deserves to be heard and seen — and, most importantly, believed.”
The event’s honorees include Reese Witherspoon and Ronan Farrow. Kerry Washington, Gretchen Carlson, Stacey Abrams, John Legend and Charlize Theron are serving as speakers and presenters. President of MRC Media, which includes THR and Billboard, Deanna Brown, and publisher Lynne Segall also made remarks, as did editorial director Matt Belloni and guest editor Olivia Wilde.
Also in attendance were notable names such as Niecy Nash, Sophia Bush, Janet Mock, Bonnie Arnold, Gigi Gorgeous, Jennifer Salke, Bob Gersh, Maggie Rogers, Anna Paquin, Channing Dungey, Lori Greiner, Meg Whitman, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Nina Shaw, Donna Langley, Dawn Hudson and Kaitlyn Dever, among others.
The Women in Entertainment event was sponsored by Cadillac, Fiji Water, Moroccan Oil, eOne, Gersh, SAG-AFTRA, Loyola Marymount University in partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles and Entertainment Industry Foundation.
This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.