A&E cancels controversial series “8 Minutes”

The U.S. cable network has pulled the Relativity Television-produced series (pictured), which followed a vice cop-turned-pastor who goes undercover to convince sex workers to quit prostitution, after five episodes.
May 6, 2015

A&E has pulled the controversial reality series 8 Minutes (pictured) after five episodes.

A spokesperson for the cable network confirmed to realscreen that the Relativity Television-produced series has been cancelled, citing low ratings.

The series followed vice cop-turned-pastor Kevin Brown and his team of advocates as they went undercover in hotel rooms to convince sex workers to quit prostitution and accept “resources” that would help them start a new life.

8 Minutes attracted a backlash before A&E officially announced the show. After Relativity Television CEO Tom Forman discussed it in an interview with Entertainment Weekly last December, a Change.org petition urging A&E to cancel it was started and later, nearly two dozen non-profits signed an open letter to Forman arguing that Brown’s process is dangerous and ineffective.

In an interview with realscreen in early April, Forman said he had had long email conversations and phone calls with advocates concerning the show, adding: “I am interested in hearing that perspective and I think it’s important that we be mindful of it.”

On Monday (May 4), BuzzFeed published a report in which four sex workers alleged that they were not given the assistance they were promised.

A&E’s spokesperson said the network had no comment on the report because the show is no longer airing. A spokesperson for Relativity Television also said the production company had no comment.

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