In an effort to uplift the voices of Black women filmmakers and make a space for diverse storytelling, entrepreneur Riqua Hailes Turner has announced the launch of the Black Women Network — a streaming platform created by, funded by and dedicated to Black women.
The network, which will be known shorthand as theBW, is the first of its kind, will be available on all major streaming app platforms and will feature six pieces of original programming as well as license films and series through distribution company Allrites. It will be licensing music through a collaboration with Extreme Music.
“My goal with theBW is to create a high fidelity streaming app dedicated and created for black women by Black women,” Hailes Turner said in a release. “By creating a first-of-its-kind platform, my dream is for us to continue to gain equity in the entertainment industry by creating and owning our narratives.”
Hailes Turner, who founded luxury extension salon collection Just Extensions in 2009 and later the cannabis lifestyle and events brand Just Cannabis in 2021, has dealt with losing distribution for her 2015 Just Extensions documentary. Now she aims to assist in helping other Black women secure funding and distribution for their own projects via theBW.
The entrepreneur will be teaming up with executive producer Antoinetta Hairston-Stallings, operation executive Kisha Cavette-Williams, actor and producer Novi Brown, and graphic designer Courtney Coprich.
Among the shows set for theBW’s launch are The Undoing, a talk show about overcoming adversity; a series following Bloomingdales shoe designer Jess Rich titled Boss AF; Pretty For a Big Girl, set in the world of magazine publishing; Brown’s astrology-themed interview series Conversation & Constellations, and a weekly independent film showcase that gives filmmakers an option to submit their work.
The Undoing, hosted by Kayla Wanakee, will feature guests Sarah Jakes Roberts, Michelle Sneed and Dr. Peace Amadi, to name a few.
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The Black Women Network will be available for a $5.99 monthly subscription rate and available to download on Sept. 18 via IOS, tvOS, Android, AndroidTV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, XBOX One and Samsung TV.
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