Oprah Winfrey Protégé Launches First Social Commerce Online TV Network

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(Newswire.net — September 12, 2013) Los Angeles, Califormia —  Darryl Edric Pugh, Sr., award-winning actor, writer, producer, director and Oprah Winfrey protégé from Baltimore, announced today the launch of BlackHistoryCinema.com, an evolution in filmmaking.


It is the first of its kind commercial free, social commerce television network created for viewers who want to experience different voices in global black history. Voices created from real life experiences.


The new television network was created from original content produced over a 30 year period by Darryl and Renee’ Pugh, the award-winning husband and wife team who recently celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary. Their son, Darryl Jr. is also an accomplished upcoming filmmaker.


Young Darryl “Koi” Pugh’s work can be seen on his video blog http://RazorEdgeFilms.com


The Black History Cinema network is powered by Gumroad.com, the social commerce platform that allows product creators to sell through social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.


The BHC library contains over 100 hours of original content created from the couple covering events in the community that no other filmmaker or news organization would cover.


As former BET insiders they have worked with many stars including Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Halle Berry, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Denzel Washington, Mary J. Blige and many others.


“We’re using a $0+ pricing subcriiption model as a form of crowd-funding to raise money for our first feature film project, said co-founder and producer Renee’ Pugh.


“Instead of inticing donors by giving away “stuff” in exchange for their donation, we are allowing supporters to watch our past productions by giving them the option to watch for free or donate from their heart. Up to $1000 per program. A working email is all that’s needed to gain access to our content. You can even watch first and then return to make a donation afterwards. How cool is that?”


The fund raising idea was inspired by filmmaker Spike Lee who recently raised over 1.5 million dollars in thirty days through the crowd-funding site Kickstarter.


There is a special signed and framed Million Man March poster for any donor who gives $500 or more. The poster was created from an original poem and photographs shot by Darryl who was working that day as the Technical Director for the Ed Gordan interview segments with the stars.


Some of the programming on the first African American owned online television network includes the first two pilot episodes of the nation’s first black “Dynasty” soap opera called “The Raven”.


The first twenty-two minute pilot was produced in 1983 and was one of twelve shows chosen (out of over 300 entries) by the National Association of Broadcasters to be showcased at the first annual minority television producer’s exhibition held in Las Vegas in 1984. The Cosby Show was one of the other eleven shows chosen that year.


It was inspired by Oprah Winfrey who introduced herself to Darryl as a fellow Thespian when the two first met at Morgan State University in the fall of 1976.


Then an accomplished stage actor, Darryl was there as a member of the Ira Aldridge Players starring in the lead role of Stanley Kawalski in the first black production of “A Streetcar Named Desire”.


Oprah was there covering a story on Jesse Jackson for the evening news on WJZ-TV Channel 13. She was twenty-three years old and Darryl was nineteen.


“I am alive today because of a crush I had on Oprah after we first met in 1976. She told me that acting was her real passion and that the job at WJZ was just a stepping stone to Hollywood. That became my inspiration to produce high-quality African American television and films.” said BHC founder Darryl Edric Pugh, Sr.


“From 1986-1990, I worked as the topical producer for the syndicated Oprah Winfrey show at WMAR-TV in Baltimore. She and I last spoke in 1991 after the taping of her show in Baltimore. I gave her a VHS copy of the second pilot episode of the “The Raven”.  She promised she would watch it and give us her feedback but never did. I guess she got busy and forgot about us. We still love her and are avid supporters of OWN.”


The second pilot episode of “The Raven” made television history when it became the first black nighttime soap opera to air on a network television station on January 12, 1991 from 11:30pm-12:30am.


The airing was a huge regional success even beating out “Saturday Night Live” in the Nielsen ratings in predominately white demographics.


Ironically, it aired on WJZ-TV Channel 13, the same station where Oprah cut her teeth in the talk genre with “People Are Talking”.


Other programming currently available on the new network include: A Rare Performance by Whitney Houston shot in 1996, A rare performance by Stevie Wonder when he received the Library of Congress Gershwin Award in 2009 and a number of other historic original programs.


The award-winning production of “Sparrows Point Together Again” is also available on the new network. The new feature film film will be based on this true story of the African American men of steel who helped build America.


Black History Cinema is truly an evolution in filmmaking with plans to produce more cutting-edge programming and to create thousands of production jobs.


For more information contact:


Darryl Edric Pugh, Sr.