Comedy Central today announced a greenlight for a one-hour comedic documentary from D.L. Hughley, How Not to Get Shot and Other Advice from White People, based on Hughley’s New York Times bestselling book of the same name. Hughley will executive produce and star in the project, which will follow him into the field to explore the state of race in America. By following behavioral advice given to African Americans, will Hughley make all the problems of race in America disappear, or will he bring systemic prejudice to light?
It’s an artistically brilliant move by Comedy Central, as the network wades deeper into the documentary space (a Patrice O’Neal doc is currently in production). Hughley’s book made our list of outstanding comedy produced in 2018. Styled as a self help book for black people, the book is brilliant social commentary that responds to the shitty advice white people offer to help black people survive in America in 2019. Advice like “If only he had complied with the cop, he might be alive today,” and “he shouldn’t have worn that hoodie.” We praised the laugh out loud funny book that uses comedy in the best way- to point out hypocrisies present in our culture.
The book included chapters include “How to Do Your Hair”, “What to Name Your Kids”, and “How to Move Into a White Neighborhood.” And when you comply with police orders, should you do it quickly? Or slowly? All of this should translate well to the small screen, and bring the important commentary to a wider audience.
“I look forward to working with Comedy Central on this documentary, where we’ll get to explore deeper into the state of race as I see it today. And then…leave it to me to point out the absurd,” said Hughley. “I dig how Comedy Central saw How Not To Get Shot as I did — knowing the conversation would extend far beyond the length of a book.”
Sarah Babineau and Jonas Larsen, Co-Heads of Original Content, Comedy Central remarked, “D.L. has an eye for the absurdities that mainstream America too often accepts as normal, especially when it comes to race. His incisive wit and comedic genius will be on full display in How Not to Get Shot.”
How Not to Get Shot and Other Advice From White People is executive produced by Hughley, 3Arts, Hugh Fink, Adam Mansbach, and Vikram Gandhi, who is also director and showrunner. Sonya Vaughn is a producer. Hughley is repped by 3Arts and UTA. Fink and Vikram are repped by UTA. Jonas Larsen, Christian McLaughlin, Ola Iko, and Michael Stanger are the Executives in Charge of Production for Comedy Central.
Hughley’s 2012 docu-comedy special with Comedy Central, D.L. Hughley: The Endangered List (2012), was awarded the George Foster Peabody Award in the 72nd Annual Peabody Awards competition.
How Not to Get Shot is the latest project to advance Comedy Central’s expansion into the documentary space, following the network’s October announcement of plans for a deep-dive documentary about the life of comedian Patrice O’Neal. Earlier this year, Comedy Central premiered Klepper, an eight-episode immersive documentary series about American activism, and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah Presents Desi Lydic: Abroad, a one-hour special chronicling Lydic’s international exploration of how the U.S. has fallen behind other nations on issues of gender equality. Prior Comedy Central docu-comedy specials include Jeff Ross Roasts the Border: Live from Brownsville, Texas (2017), Jeff Ross Roasts Cops (2016), and Jeff Ross Roasts Criminals: Live at Brazos County Jail (2015).