Entertainment Weekly

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

Nicki Minaj, Pitbull, Bruno Mars: musicians on TV

… Or trying to

Posted on

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic; Larry Busacca/Getty Images; Kevin Mazur/WireImage

If there’s one thing Empire has taught us, it’s that TV and music do mix — quite well, actually. While musicians have been making guest appearances on TV for a while now — remember when Boyz II Men were on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air?— there are several who have recently announced they’re taking it a step further by and going behind the camera or taking a starring role. Here are eight performers who are making the jump to TV, successfully or not. 

1. John Legend

Legend and wife Chrissy Teigen have secured a put pilot deal at ABC for Ordinary People, a romantic comedy loosely inspired by the couple’s life. The show will follow an interracial couple “with opposite personalities and big-time aspirations” and will feature music from Legend. Tracy Oliver (Survivor’s Remorse) is slated to pen the show, while Black-ish creator Kenya Barris will act as executive producer along with the couple.

2. Nicki Minaj

ABC Family announced that the rapper will executive produce and appear in a half-hour comedy based on her family’s immigration from Trinidad in the early 1990s. The show will follow Minaj’s life growing up in Queens, and she’ll write new  raps for the show. Kate Angelo, of Will & Grace fame, wrote the pilot and will executive produce alongside Aaron Kaplan, Stella Bulochnikov, Gee Roberson, and Brian Sher.

3. Bruno Mars

The “Uptown Funk” singer is slated to produce a NBC family comedy pilot about a musical family in the Bronx that takes in their energetic 10-year-old relative. Bruno Mars’ music is expected to be on the show in some capacity. Brian Grazer (Empire) is tagging along as one of the executive producers on the project.

4. Pitbull

Mr. Worldwide himself will executive produce a Fox Miami-set drama about a teenager acclimating to his new surroundings at a prestigious private school. David Ortiz will co-executive produce with Mr. 305, with Sascha Penn (Power) writing scripts and Jonathan Levine (Warm Bodies) directing.. As of now, neither Pitbull or Fox has announced whether the artist will feature music for the show.

5. Michel’le

The R&B Divas: Los Angeles star is teaming up with Thinkfactory Media on a scripted TV movie and a documentary about her life, according to her Twitter. The film will focus on the singers Compton upbringing, as well as her relationship with both Death Row founders Suge Knight and Dr. Dre, according to Deadline.

6. T.I.

The rapper-turned-actor-turned-reality star has inked a deal a talent holding/development deal with Warner Bros Television, according to Deadline. The studio is planning to develop an entire series around T.I. but hopes to cast him an already existing project as well. T.I. holds an extensive television resumé already, having stints on Boss and House of Lies as well as recently completing production of season 5 of the VH1 hit reality show, T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle.

7. Adam Levine

NBC has recently pulled the plug on The 1970s, a musical limited drama series produced by The Voice coach, according to Deadline. The show was hoping to tap Hayden Christensen and Kelsey Grammer but ran into budgeting problems, causing the network to cut the pilot. 

8. Rivers Cuomo

The Weezer frontman’s TV pilot DeTour was axed by Fox, even though the pilot was finished, according to Vulture. The show was based off the rock star’s personal life and his decision to go back to college and all the drama that ensues.