Don Cornelius’ Career Inspires ‘American Soul’ Drama On BET
The legendary Don Cornelius’ life serves as the basis for a new show on BET. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the famed network greenlit a 10-episode program that’ll take viewers through each pivotal part of Cornelius’ life and career.
Billed as a drama, the show will be produced by Jesse Collins Entertainment and executive produced by Cornelius’ son, Tony Cornelius. The 1970s might also serve as a starting point since Don Cornelius’ Soul Train show began to pick up steam and critical-acclaim. Cornelius passed away in 2012.
In a 1970 interview with Billboard, Cornelius shared the premise of Soul Train in terms of marketing and the show’s significance. “With Soul Train we are trying to give people a choice between general market TV and ethnic programming. Actually, there is no general market or wide appeal TV in Chicago. All the stations are aimed at the upper middle and upper classes in the suburbs,” he said. “I’m willing to help get ethnic TV going, although it shouldn’t be necessary. If the media was doing its job, it would serve all the people. We’re just trying to give black people something to identify with. Right now, we’re only competing with cartoons and movies.”
The show has yet to present a premiere date.