Docuseries and TV movie about R. Kelly allegations in the works at Lifetime
Lifetime is turning its attention to R&B superstar R. Kelly, who is currently facing multiple accusations of sexual misconduct.
On Monday, the network announced that it has given the green light to two projects focused on the recent controversy surrounding the singer: a documentary series and a feature-length movie, both of which are currently untitled and will be part of Lifetime’s Stop Violence Against Women public affairs campaign. The news comes a week after Time’s Up leaders announced a call to mute the “Ignition (Remix)” singer in light of the many allegations against him.
According to a Lifetime press release, the docuseries, which is executive produced by Dream Hampton (Treasure: From Tragedy to Trans Justice Mapping a Detroit Story), is a “captivating investigation into the controversial superstar” and will feature both survivors and people from Kelly’s inner circle who have decided to come forward for the first time. Meanwhile, the movie, which is executive produced by Ilene Kahn Power (Gia) will “lift the veil on the secretive inner world of R. Kelly, bringing to light the shocking allegations of abuse and twisted mind games.”
“Some very brave black women have trusted us with their stories, their truth and their trauma,” Hampton said in a statement. “They are survivors and I’m honored to share their stories with the world.”
Accusations of sexual misconduct have followed Kelly for years. He was indicted on 21 counts of child pornography in 2002, but was acquitted. In September 2017, BuzzFeed News reported that parents had told police Kelly was holding women against their will; however, Kelly “unequivocally” denied the allegations in a statement released via his lawyer. In a BBC Three documentary aired in March, ex-girlfriend Kitti Jones accused Kelly of sexual abuse and said he “trained” young women to be his “pets.” At the time, Kelly’s publicist declined to comment to EW. Kelly had earlier denied Jones’ allegations in a statement to PEOPLE.
Both Lifetime projects are being executive produced by Joel Karsberg and Jesse Daniels, of Kreativ. Brie Miranda Bryant is also an EP on the docuseries for Lifetime, and Barbara Marshall will write the feature film.
“We’ve been working for over a year to bring forth the stories of these women,” Karsberg said in a statement. “We are proud to team with Lifetime to shed light on these stories as well as an industry that has looked the other way for so many years.”