Black Entertainment Television announced yesterday that it has licensed the rights to air current season episodes of the hit series, Scandal.
Beginning this fall, each episode of Scandal season 3 will air on BET no earlier than eight days after its original broadcast on ABC, according to the announcement. Additionally, BET will usher fans into the new season by airing the first two seasons of the series this summer.
“Scandal is a cultural phenomenon that has resonated with viewers for the past two seasons, and we’re excited to be part of its continued journey,” Debra L. Lee, BET chairwoman, said in a statement.
Originating from the ingenious mind of Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes, Scandal first aired on ABC on April 5, 2012 as a mid-season replacement. Since then the series has attracted a following of 9.1 million viewers and consistently dominates its 10 p.m. time slot, winning key female demographics and adults 18-49.
Attracting an average of 2.8 million African-American viewers each week, Scandal is the No.1 broadcast series among blacks, according to BET.
Scandal stars Kerry Washington (Django Unchained, Ray) as Olivia Pope, a former communications director to the president of the United States and owner of a prominent crisis management firm.
The series also stars Columbus Short (Stomp the Yard), Tony Goldwyn (Ghost, The Last Samurai), Jeff Perry (Grey’s Anatomy), Guillermo Diaz (Weeds), Darby Stanchfield (NCIS), Katie Lowes (Super 8) and Bellamy Young (Criminal Minds).
BET’s deal with ABC is unusual since shows like Scandal usually are picked up by networks years after the series concludes.
But, with almost no original scripted programming, and weak programming in general, a network has to do what a network has to do.