With two new original films based on Mary J. Blige’s biggest hits, Mary J. Blige’s Real Love and Mary J. Blige’s Strength of a Woman, set to debut on back-to-back Saturdays starting June 10 at 8 p.m./7 c, the “Queen of Hip Hop Soul” will rule this summer.
The two films in the two-pack star Ajiona Alexus (Empire, 13 Reasons Why), Da’Vinchi (BMF, All American), Princess Davis, Austin Anozie, Millan Tesfazgi, Shiraine Haas, Garfield Wilson, and Hamza Fouad, and they depict the highs and lows of young Black love.
In Mary J. Blige’s Strength of a Woman, Kendra, and Ben’s story advances more than 15 years. Kendra, who is now a successful photographer, is in a failing marriage and is forced to face the choices she made to live the life she thought she wanted. She finds herself in a precarious situation when Ben suddenly reappears in her life. She now needs to find the inner strength to take charge of her life and possibly accept the love Ben may be offering once more.
Lifetime has partnered with Take Back The Night Foundation®, an international event and non-profit organization, in support of the content to help survivors on their healing journeys and to end all forms of sexual violence, including sexual assault, sexual abuse, trafficking, stalking, gender harassment, and relationship violence.
John Davis and Jordan Davis, both of Davis Entertainment, are directing and serving as executive producers on both films. The well-received Lifetime movie Love You to Death, which was based on the life of Gypsy Rose Blanchard, was recently produced by Jordan. The Uglies, a science fiction/fantasy movie with Joey King and Laverne Cox that will be available on Netflix, also has Jordan as a producer. Because it was Jordan and her daughter’s favorite book, work on the project, which is expected to be released this year, began in 2006. John Davis is a seasoned film, television, and award-winning producer who has worked on more than 115 top-grossing features, including Predator, Grumpy Old Men, Waterworld, and most recently Prey, to name a few.
Through her own production company, Blue Butterfly, Ashaunna K. Ayars, and Q. Nicole Jackson serve as co-producers with Mary J. Blige on both original movies. Blige has a history of connecting with Lifetime viewers; she co-executive produced The Clark Sisters: The First Ladies of Gospel, the network’s highest-rated original movie of 2020, with Queen Latifah and Missy Elliott. The Clark Sisters was the top original movie on cable in 2020 with more than 13.9 million Total Viewers1. 2 Additionally, Blige co-starred with Angela Bassett in the Lifetime civil rights biopic Betty & Coretta as Dr. Betty Shabazz, marking her acting debut.
Additionally, Front Street Pictures and Sony Pictures Television both produced and distributed Mary J. Blige’s Real Love and Mary J. Blige’s Strength of a Woman. Real Love is helmed by Camrus Johnson from a screenplay by Sonja Warfield and Rachel Ingram, and Strength of a Woman is helmed by Shari Lynette Carpenter from a screenplay by Ingram.