4:23pm PT by Rick Porter
Tyler Perry Eyes July Restart for BET's 'The Oval,' 'Sistas'
Tyler Perry has set a target date to resume production on two of his series for BET.
The multihyphenate plans to begin work on the second seasons of The Oval and Sistas at his Atlanta studios on July 8, with safety precautions in place for cast and crewmembers amid the COVID-19 crisis. BET has formally renewed both shows, which ranked as the top two first-year scripted series on cable this season.
"We are excited to continue our partnership with Tyler Perry and for the renewals of our two Wednesday night programming staples, The Oval and Sistas," BET president Scott Mills said Tuesday in a statement. "BET is committed to investing in quality programming from top industry power players and giving viewers more of the content they love and expect from the brand across our platforms."
Assuming all goes according to plan, the two shows would be among the first in the U.S. to resume full studio production since most filming stopped in mid-March due to the coronavirus pandemic. Tyler Perry Studios is located on a former military base in Atlanta, and the plan is for the two series to shoot consecutively, beginning with Sistas. Perry will direct all episodes of both shows, with production on an accelerated schedule that amounts to shooting an entire episode in a day or less.
Perry will provide private plane travel for castmembers, and most crewmembers are local. Everyone involved in the production will be housed at the studio during filming and tested for the novel coronavirus upon arrival and several times afterward.
Perry writes, directs and executive produces both shows. Michelle Sneed is also an executive producer for Tyler Perry Studios.
The Oval and Sistas are part of a multiyear content partnership Perry has with BET's parent company, ViacomCBS. He also produces two other shows, The Oval spinoff Ruthless and the comedy Bruh, for the cabler's BET+ streaming service.