October 31, 2006 12:08 AM by Joe Blackmon
VH1 gives rockers, rappers, boy banders and fallen music execs a cozy spot in the home for music and pop culture. The network has greenlit six new series, it was announced by Brian Graden, President, Entertainment, MTV Networks Music Group. The new music series greenlit include: “Irv Gotti Project,” “Man Band,” “ego trip’s White Rapper Show,” “Whitestarr Project,” “Rags To Riches” and “Bridging The Gap.” On the heels of VH1′s wildly successful “Celebreality” franchise, the network creates “VH1′s Wild Life” to house these programs.
“The breadth of this slate of music-based series illustrates, once again, that VH1 is the only place for adults to go to see the kinds of music and storytelling that speaks only to them,” explained Graden. “This slate features all kinds of characters — Irv Gotti, Cisco Adler, Jeff Timmons, Queen Latifah – we love that they all have a place at VH1.”
“Just as we gave Hulk and his family a home with ‘Celebreality,’ we wanted to create a new branded block for all the crazy rockers and rappers that we love so well,” commented Tom Calderone, Executive Vice President and General Manager. “‘VH1′s Wild Life,’ — it’s a home for the ‘raging!’”
Irv Gotti Project – After being investigated for 3 years by the federal government on charges of money laundering and acquitted, Irv Gotti is now attempting a comeback with his label The Inc while also juggling his responsibilities as a husband and father.
Irv Gotti Project is executive produced by Mark Cronin and Cris Abrego for Mindless Entertainment and 51 Pictures. The duo has produced 10 shows for VH1 including the hit franchises “Flavor of Love, “Surreal Life,” “My Fair Brady” and their latest project “Celebrity Paranormal.” Jeff Olde, Jill Holmes, Alex Demyanenko and Kristen Kelly are the executive producers for VH1. Michael Hirschorn also serves as Executive Producer for VH1.
Man Band – For half a decade Boy Bands ruled the airwaves, maintaining a strange hold on their bustling, female audience and just as quickly they faded from the spotlight. Now, all grown up, VH1 has decided to bring members of these teenage heartthrobs together in the new reality series “Man Band.” Living together under one roof, five boy band legends including Bryan Abrams (Color Me Badd), Rich Cronin (LFO), Chris Kirkpatrick (‘N Sync) and Jeff Timmons (98 Degrees) will be challenged to create new music, a dynamic stage show and then perform as a new pop group – all of which begs the question “Can lightening strike twice?”
“Man Band” is executive produced by Troy Searer and John Foy for Tijuana Entertainment, Tony Harding and Kennedy for Kandokid Productions and Jim Ackerman for VH1. Christian McLaughlin is the supervising producer and Michael Hirschorn serves as Executive Producer for VH1.
ego trip’s White Rapper Show – Since the first rhymes flowed in the parks of the South Bronx, most of rap’s major emcees, have been African American. But from the from the mean streets of Brooklyn and Detroit, the likes of The Beastie Boys and Eminem emerged and dedicated themselves to boldly going where no white boys had gone before, the top of the Hip Hop world. Now, 20 years after the Beasties first exercised their "License to Ill," VH1 and ego trip have stepped in to search for the next great “White Rapper.” VH1 last teamed up with ego trip in 2004 for “TV’s Illest Minority Moments Presented by ego trip.” Adapted from ego trip’s Big Book of Racism, the special took a look at some of the most compelling, controversial and unintentionally hilarious race-related moments in television history.
Hosted by white rap legend Michael “MC Serch” Berrin (of the group 3rd Bass) and producing legend Prince Paul and set in the in the birthplace of hip hop — the South Bronx – “ego trip’s White Rapper Show” features 10 contestants representing from all over America who must battle their way through challenges designed to test their musical cred, knowledge of hip hop culture and their ideas about race.
Ken Mok is executive producer and Paul Buscemi is supervising producer for 10X10 Productions. Sacha Jenkins, Gabriel Alvarez, Brent Rollins, Elliot Wilson and Jefferson Mao are executive producers for ego trip. Jim Ackerman and Michael Hirschorn are executive producers and Christian McLaughlin is the supervising producer for VH1.
Untitled Whitestarr Project – This comedic romp follows privileged Malibu rocker and Mischa Barton’s boyfriend, Cisco Adler and his band Whitestarr as they balance gigs, groupies and girlfriends in their last shot at rock and roll immortality. Whitestarr lives the rock life. They attract screaming hordes of female fans, have been in and out of rehab, have fired members of the band and re-hired them the same day.
They’ve learned that future rock gods look better in tight pants, especially if they’re womens’ and that there’s no shame in hiring a chubby lawyer to be your dancer. They’re connoisseurs of everything Sex, Drugs and Rock n’ Roll. The only lesson they haven’t learned is how to sell a record. Now, these unlikely rock heroes are allowing cameras to follow their path to rock stardom. Viewers will get an insider’s look at the backstage drama as these four rockers (and one dancer) fight their way to the top of the charts, or at least sell their first record.
Untitled Whitestarr Project is executive produced by George Verschoor (Jamie Kennedy’s “Blowin’ Up,” “Nashville Star”) and David Osper (MTV’s “Homewrecker”), and produced by Verschoor’s Hoosick Falls Productions. Jill Holmes, Damla Dogan, Jeff Olde and Michel Hirschorn are executive producers for VH1.
Bridging the Gap – This limited series documents two established artists who come together for the first time to explore their shared musical passions. In each episode these artists who share a mutual admiration and respect for the other will, in the span of a day, discuss their lives and music while creating a new track produced by one of today’s hottest producers. Eve and Queen Latifah are featured in the first episode of this half hour music series.
“Bridging the Gap” is executive produced by Troy Carter and Charles Alston from the Coalition and Michele M. Dix and Karla Hidalgo for VH1. Shelly Tatro and Michael Hirschorn also serves as Executive Producer for VH1.
Rags to Riches – A half-hour verite series that celebrates the best aspects of human nature: the capacity to overcome hardship through dedicated work and talent, the thrill of enjoying hard-won material possessions, and the compassion realized when giving back to those still in need. In each episode, a musician or actor will take viewers on a journey to their humble beginnings and walk them through their childhood, the challenges of growing up and how they have given back to their community and the people who helped them realize their stardom. The pilot episode which has previously aired on the channel featured Snoop Dogg.
“Rags to Riches” is created and directed by Lauren Lazin, who was nominated for a 2005 Academy Award for her film Tupac: Resurrection. Executive Producers are Brad Abramson, Shelly Tatro, and Michael Hirschorn for VH1.