BET to celebrate 25th anniversary

November 01, 2005|By LOS ANGELES TIMES

When Black Entertainment Television, the first black-owned cable network, went on air in 1980, its initial series were a gospel show and a video program with a set so flimsy the host's podium once collapsed on air.

Twenty-five years later, BET celebrates a huge milestone with 25 Strong: The BET Silver Anniversary Celebration, a two-hour special airing tonight at 9.

"In the beginning, folks were thinking that this network wouldn't last 25 months, much less 25 years," said Donnie Simpson, BET's first veejay.

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