Central City Productions announces the launch of the Stellar TV network, set to premiere in fourth quarter of 2022. The Stellar TV network is a wholly owned subsidiary of Central City Productions, Inc., the oldest Black-owned and operated television production company in the country. Central City Productions has been in operation since 1970 and remains dedicated to creating Black excellence in television programming.
Central City Productions is the creator of the Stellar Gospel Music Awards, the longest-airing Black ad-supported awards show on television featuring the best in Gospel Music, plus a multitude of other uplifting and original television programs such as Black Music Honors, Black College Quiz, America’s Black Forum, Mentoring Kings, Mentoring Queens, Family Night, and many others. The network’s owned and operated library of 50 years is primed with more than 5,000 hours of family-friendly entertainment.
The Stellar TV launch will be hosted by Marc Morial, President and CEO of the National Urban League, the nation’s largest historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization. Marc Morial is also a leading advocate for the growth of Black-owned television networks and a leading voice on the national stage in the battle for jobs, education, housing, and voting rights equity. The formal announcement will take place on July 15, during an invitation-only press announcement event during the Stellar Gospel Music Awards weekend of taping in Atlanta, Georgia.
“Now more than ever, Black audiences want to see themselves reflected in what they watch on television, including programs that are safe for the entire family. We are excited about our early engagement and commitments with our charter media partners, who include Procter & Gamble, Walmart, Verizon, Toyota, State Farm, AT&T, General Motors, Dentsu/Carat, Publicis Media, Hearts and Science, and Nielsen Audience Measurement; along with our distribution carriage partners Charter Communications, Verizon FIOs, XUMO, and STIRR TV, who are walking the talk as they do business with Black-owned networks to reach Black consumers,” said Don Jackson, Chairman and CEO of Central City Productions and founder of the Stellar TV network. “With the launch of Stellar TV, Black America and others have another avenue to witness positive, uplifting and multifaceted representation of our culture, our voice and our music.”
According to a February 2022 diverse-owned media report from Nielsen, Black families are accessing more content than ever, and are leaning into programming where they can feel seen and represented. Black-owned media networks are more than two-and-half times more likely to attract Black audiences, underscoring the value of programs created for and by the community, both to audiences themselves and to advertisers and marketers.
Upon launch, Stellar TV programming components will include exclusive original content from Stellar TV’s library, plus its annual and quarterly flagship specials, along with new premiere content. In addition, Stellar TV’s charter partner, Procter & Gamble’s Chief Brand Officer Marc Pritchard, will be the keynote speaker at Stellar TV network’s press announcement and will highlight P&G’s “Widen The Screen” Black creative producers initiative, which will air on Stellar TV.
Stellar TV is also an active member of Publicis Media’s Once & For All Coalition, which is a cross-industry consortium that aims to break down industry barriers to equitable representation and financial opportunity for diverse-owned media suppliers.
Distribution carriage partners as of this press release include: Charter Communications, a leading cable operator serving more than 32 million customers in 41 states through its Spectrum brand, which is set to premiere the Stellar TV network during the fourth quarter of 2022; Verizon FIOS, a television service operating over a fiber optical network that covers roughly 11% of the U.S. population; XUMO, a free ad-supported streaming service that offers over 200 channels of premium programming; and STIRR TV, an ad-supported video streaming service owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group.
The Stellar TV network is also committed to building the next generation of television production professionals. Stellar TV is committed to providing Black and Brown students in film and television programs at community colleges in urban cities with hands-on production training, shadowing, mentorship, internships, and employment opportunities in Stellar TV productions.