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IMAGE: Michael Vick
Pool  /  Getty Images file
What do you get when you add an arrest for running a dogfighting ring to a recently completed 18-month prison term? If you're infamous quarterback Michael Vick, you get a deal for an eight-part television series on BET.
By The Scoop
msnbc.com
updated 10/8/2009 8:49:52 AM ET 2009-10-08T12:49:52

What do you get when you add an arrest for running a dogfighting ring to a recently completed 18-month prison term? If you’re infamous quarterback Michael Vick, you get a deal for an eight-part television series on BET.

The tentatively titled “Michael Vick Project,” a “docu-series,” not a reality show per se, will spotlight his comeback with the Philadelphia Eagles and also delve into his back story, from his difficult childhood to his 2007 arrest for running a dog-fighting ring, according to the L.A. Times.

Vick was released from prison in May, and several months is enough time to put together a television deal. However, if the cameras have extensive coverage of the hours and days immediately following his prison release, it does makes you wonder if he was negotiating a deal from behind bars.

Regardless of how the “Project” came together, it doesn’t sound like PETA members will be setting their DVRs when it airs.

Slideshow: Falling star “People who abuse animals don't deserve to be rewarded,” said PETA spokesman Dan Shannon. “They shouldn't be given multimillion-dollar contracts ... or given the privilege of being a role model.”

The show, I predict, will be a fantastic success at least from a viewership standpoint. There are a number of Vick fans out there who will watch for the simple reason that in the privacy of your own living room, you’re not judged for supporting a football player who preferred dogs engaged in bloodsport over dogs engaged in games of fetch.

The series is scheduled to air in early 2010.

Guy Ritchie deems Madonna ‘retarded’
Madonna’s ex-husband Guy Ritchie didn’t seem to want to answer questions about her during a recent Esquire interview, but once he got going, Ritchie was not at a loss for words.

Slideshow: Celebrity Sightings “She’s a manifester, if there ever was one,” Ritchie began, sort of cryptically. “First-rate manifester. Madonna makes things happen. Put Madonna up against any 23-year-old, she'll outwork them, outdance them, outperform them. The woman is broad.”

And then this: “And, of course, here you go: I still love her,” he says. “But she's retarded, too.”

The rest of the interview is online.

Keeping tabs: When kidnappings make the cover
Six years after her rescue, Elizabeth Smart testified in court last week about the kidnapping she endured. This story, in my opinion, didn’t get enough attention, which is why I’m thrilled to see it being covered by two of the celeb weeklies. People magazine puts Smart on the cover, which comes as no surprise — these types of stories allow People to do what it does best, compelling human-interest pieces.

In Touch also covers Smart, but in a split cover with Jaycee Dugard. Kudos go to In Touch for making the call to go in this direction. Crime and human-interest stories haven’t always performed well for them on the newsstands, but this week In Touch proves that sometimes, the story that needs to be covered isn’t always the same that sells.

Courtney Hazlett delivers the Scoop Monday through Friday on msnbc.com. Follow Scoop on Twitter @courtneyatmsnbc

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