Q&A with Comedy Central's 'Hood Adjacent' Executive Producer, Rikki Hughes | The Urban Twist
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Q&A with Comedy Central’s ‘Hood Adjacent’ Executive Producer, Rikki Hughes

In this exclusive, the talented Rikki goes on to explain how she is a bright and shining star even though she is behind the cameras.

Christina Jeter

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Rikki Hughes is a veteran producer who began her television career producing award shows and comedy specials. Though she planned on going to medical school, she was sidetracked by the entertainment business, which lead her to produce Katt Williams’s special It’s Pimpin Pimpin’.


Currently, Hughes is the showrunner and executive producer of Comedy Central’s currently airing series, Hood Adjacent, based on the comedy of James Davis, which premiered on June 28th.

In this exclusive, the talented Rikki goes on to explain how she is a bright and shining star even though she is behind the cameras.

What aspired you to go from medical school to the entertainment business?

Soon after I graduated from the University of Washington, I met George Jackson and he was producing Jason’s Lyric.  At that time, sound tracks were his companion piece and marketing tool to a film’s success.  George asked me about fresh musical talent.

I worked with Warren G. and his uncle/manager Ron G. and  I was asked to go on the road to help manage Warren.  Surprisingly enough, my parents thought it was a great opportunity to travel the world.  I was supposed to go back to school, but I got the entertainment bug and never looked back.

How did you get the job producing Katt Williams’s special called It’s Pimpin Pimpin’?

Like most of my career, the Katt Williams’s project came by word of mouth.  My dear friend and colleague John Cossette said “There is no one that can bring this one home…you better call Rikki!”  It’s all history from there.

Do you face a lot of competition being an African-American woman in a male dominated position?

There aren’t many women who do what I do and definitely not African American women in this comedy space.  I never worry about competition. I’ve learned to put my best foot forward and I have continued to find success.  In this case, I don’t feel it was a race issue, just a matter of who is best suited to get the job done.

Tell us about what you’re working on right now.

I’m honored that such great talents have trusted me with their craft.  I recently produced Dave Chappelle’s The Age of Spin comedy special that recently aired on Netflix. Also, the show I executed produced for Comedy Central called Hood Adjacent with James Davis is currently airing.

I recently shot a comedy special with Stan Lathan and Russell Simmons for HBO that has been picked up for series and finally, I’m producing a series for Lionsgate with a client that I manage, Emmanuel Hudson, who is a social influencer/actor.

On July 1st, my independent movie #DigitalLivesMatter aired on UMC featuring DC Young Fly and Emmanuel Hudson.

What is the job description of a producer, showrunner and what do you bring to the table when producing shows?

Producing is problem-solving and prioritizing.  I bring a sense of calm to an often chaotic environment.  After producing many years of live shows, I’ve learned a calm head prevails and if I’m rattled, my whole team will falter.

As a show runner, I’m in charge of the entire production from top to bottom.  It’s my job to drive the creative, engage with the network and deliver the final project (on a budget).  I often find I wear many hats as mom, confidant, enforcer, and leader.

I see you produce a lot of comedy, what draws you to that genre?

Laughter is healing and the greatest sound to my ears.  I have been fortunate to find some great comedic voices and I consider it my honor to protect and nurture that voice. Comedy provides the audience with a departure from their own reality.  I have a great respect for comics as they have the power to transform a moment.

What advice can you give to females trying to make it in this business?

Recognize that you have your own lane and don’t try to compete with the “boys club.”  When you love what you do and do good work, you will continue to succeed.  I have never been discouraged by a “No.”

Do you have any mentoring events or charities you support?

I’ve been on the Diversity Committee of the Producers Guild of America for the last 6 years a very rewarding experience. I also produce the Media Access Awards every year where we continue to shine a light on members of the entertainment and broadcast industries for their efforts in promoting awareness of the disability experience, access and the accurate portrayal of characters with disabilities.  Both of these projects are labors of love that I look forward to annually. I have never had a mentor, so  I often find myself mentoring up and coming African American women in this industry.

Rikki Hughes has spearheaded numerous awards and comedy specials including the BET Hip Hop Awards, Dear Mama, A Mother’s Day Special for VH-1, BET’s 25th Anniversary Special and Dave Chappelle’s recent comedy specials on Netflix called The Age of Spin, amongst many others.

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Entertainment

Megyn Kelly’s Ratings Hit “Possible All-Time Low for ‘Today’”

Megyn Kelly’s ratings continue to go down the tubes.

TUT Staff

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NBC’s big gamble on Megyn Kelly taking over Tamron Hall’s old timeslot continues to not pay off the way they expected.


According to Page Six, producers were hoping for a ratings bonanza with Harvey Weinstein accuser Lauren Sivan on “Megyn Kelly Today” last week but only ended up with lower ratings, as viewership slipped from 0.77 ratings points on Monday to 0.54 ratings points on Tuesday.

“It’s a possible all-time low for ‘Today.’ It may even be lower than her [Fox] cable show. [NBC News president] Noah [Oppenheim] and [NBC News and MSNBC chairman] Andy [Lack] are in big trouble,” a source told Page Six.

Another source added, “That’s a big drop. They have to turn this around.”

Kelly also appeared for the first time on MSNBC earlier this week.

“It’s unthinkable. You don’t see Matt [Lauer] or Savannah [Guthrie] on MSNBC … It’s not a good sign.”

Kelly’s poor ratings have also affected “Kathie Lee & Hoda,” Page Six reported after Kelly’s hour of “Today” was down 32 percent as compared to a year ago, while “Kathie Lee & Hoda” fell 26 percent. Insiders are reportedly blaming that on Kelly’s “weak lead-in.”

But on Friday, an NBC insider insisted: “Megyn’s having a strong week. Her numbers are up double-digits versus last week,” and “NBC News anchors appear frequently on MSNBC.”

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Music

Nelly’s Rape Accuser Refusing to Testify Won’t Stop the Police From Investigating the Case

The police are still investigating, although Nelly’s accuser refuses to testify in the case.

TUT Staff

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Nelly’s rape accuser refusing to testify doesn’t change the police investigation, according to TMZ.


Law enforcement sources in Washington State say police in Auburn are not phased by the accuser’s noncooperation with the investigation. Auburn PD is reportedly still gathering evidence and plans to present the case to the prosecutor’s office.

The alleged victim says she couldn’t take the pressure of taking on a celebrity and felt betrayed by police — so she decided not to testify against Nelly.

While her noncooperation makes the case more challenging, it’s not impossible to prosecute.

Auburn cops want to present the case to prosecutors soon — within the next week, reports TMZ.

Nelly’s attorney, Scott Rosenblum, tells TMZ he’s confident the case will be closed based on the evidence. He adds, “I would expect the police to do their due diligence.”

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Movies

New ‘Black Panther’ Trailer Released and Gives Us a Closer Look at Wakanda and Their Technology

The new trailer for ‘Black Panther’ has been released and things definitely look good in Wakanda.

TUT Staff

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Marvel Studios has released a new trailer for Black Panther, the new film starring Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, the titular hero and the king of the technologically-advanced African nation of Wakanda.


Check out the trailer above.

Chadwick Boseman debuted as the Black Panther in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War as sought vengeance death of his father, King T’Chaka, against the Winter Soldier. Boseman will also reprise his role as Black Panther for Avengers: Infinity War in May 2018.

The new film sees Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis), who was first introduced in Avengers: Age of Ultron, attempting to return to the hidden nation of Wakanda. He is this time joined by Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan), a mercenary with a grudge against Wakanda’s royal family.

As revealed in the trailer, it seems that both T’Challa and Killmonger will be getting new panther suits in the film. There’s also a brief hint that T’Challa’s sister, Shuri (Letitia Wright), may suit up. Shuri also became Black Panther in the Marvel Universe for a time.

Black Panther opens in theaters on February 16, 2018.

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