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CBS TV Studios brings in police advisors

CBS produces and airs cop shows such as Blue Bloods

CBS Television Studios has teamed with 21CP Solutions, a group specialising in police reform efforts in the US, to advise on its police and legal dramas.

The exclusive agreement will see 21CP Solutions consult with the writing teams on the ViacomCBS-owned studio’s police, crime and legal drama series.

The group of advisors will be made up of former senior law enforcement officials, civil rights scholars, lawyers, academics and community thought leaders in police reform and public safety.

21CP Solutions says it has worked with local, state and federal jurisdictions and communities in the US to lead some of the most significant police reform efforts in the country.

David Stapf

“Police and legal series have been a mainstay of the studio’s roster and the network’s schedule for decades,” said David Stapf, president of CBS Television Studios.

“We have an opportunity to build on that successful foundation going forward, and having the insightful and highly respected advisors from 21CP Solutions at our disposal is a valuable resource to our creative process.”

Tiffany Smith-Anoa’i, executive VP of diversity and inclusion at ViacomCBS, added: “Providing our writing staff with the best and most knowledgeable technical advisors offers more inclusivity and perspective.

“With deeper and richer narratives, our shows can convey experiences that are more authentic to the communities they depict.”

The team working with CBS is headed by Ronald Davis, who served in the Obama administration as the director of the US Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office), from 2013 to 2017.

“I applaud CBS Studios for recognising the impact its police and legal series have on the relationship between police and the communities they serve and on public perceptions on law enforcement, crime and race,” said Ronald Davis, partner, 21CP Solutions.

“The CBS and 21CP Solutions partnership is a first-of-its kind effort that will provide CBS and its writers with technical advice, based on the historical and current truths and realities of policing, as well as contemporary efforts to transform policing and reimagine public safety.”

The 21CP Solutions partnership follows CBS Studios’ recently announced pact with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People to develop and produce scripted, unscripted and documentary content for linear television networks and streaming platforms.

Meanwhile, CBS Entertainment has made a public commitment to increase BIPOC (black, indigenous and people of colour) representation in its writers rooms to a minimum of 40% in the 2021-2022 season, alongside immediately allocating at least 25% of the programme development budget to creators/producers of colour.

This followed US networks coming under pressure to address representation after the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis Police this summer.

In related news, CBS has renewed reality competition series Tough as Nails for a second season.

The series was created by Emmy-winning producer Phil Keoghan and his producing partner, Louise Keoghan, who are also executive producers. Phil Keoghan is the host.

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