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TV One Schedules King Documentary Specials

TV One said it will commemorate the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, Jan. 21, and the network’s fourth birthday with the world premiere of the original hour-long special, MLK: A Dream Deferred at 8 p.m. followed by the channel’s premiere of MLK: The Making of a Holiday.

MLK: A Dream Deferred, hosted and narrated by award-winning actor Isaiah Washington, compares the state of race relations in America 40 years after the death of the Rev. King against the words and dreams that the legendary civil rights leader wrote and spoke many years ago.

Noted celebrities, including Academy Award winning actress Halle Berry, Sanaa Lathan, Regina King and Hill Harper speak excerpts from the Rev. King’s most famous speeches throughout the special.

MLK: A Dream Deferred repeats at 11 p.m. on Jan. 21

At 9 p.m., TV One will air the documentary MLK: The Making of a Holiday, which chronicles the life and accomplishments of the Rev. King and the quest by many politicians and celebrities to honor his birthday as a national holiday, which began four days after his death when Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) first introduced a bill to create the national holiday and became a reality in 1985.

Hosted by Roots star and actor LeVar Burton, the program features the key leaders in the holiday movement including Coretta Scott King, Stevie Wonder and prominent members of Congress. An encore play is scheduled for midnight.

Earlier in the holiday weekend, TV One gives viewers one last chance to see the complete Roots series Jan. 20 beginning at 2 p.m. and concluding Jan. 21 at 4 p.m., Closing out the 30th anniversary celebration, this special 26-hour marathon event, which airs the same week in January that the original mini-series premiered in 1977, includes both the initial groundbreaking mini-series Roots and its sequel Roots: The Next Generations shown back to back in their entirety.

Between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Jan. 21, at the conclusion of the Roots marathon, TV One will air race-themed episodes of its regular series, including New York Undercover, Good Times, All Of Us, Roc and The Parent ’Hood.