MTV is reviving the '16 and' format for its latest series.
The network on Monday announced 16 and Recovering, a brutally honest wake-up call in the tradition of 16 and Pregnant, which helped reduce teen pregnancy to record lows (National Bureau of Economic Research).
The four-part docu-series follows nine students at Northshore Recovery High School, which was founded to address the rise in adolescent addiction, is from Emmy®-nominated Steve Liss and Regina K. Scully of the Artemis Rising Foundation.
The series is set to premiere Tuesday, September 1st at 9PM ET/PT to kick off National Recovery Month.
The cabler is collaborating with leading experts in recovery and addiction, including the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), part of the National Institutes of Health, to provide critical information and resources for 16andrecovering.com, a new site that will launch in conjunction with the premiere.
This online hub will give audiences robust offerings, including a resource guide to foster productive and meaningful conversations around the series, tools for educators to support their students and opportunities for people to get involved at a community level.
Additionally, viewers will be able to access information to better understand treatment options and the complexities of the addiction and recovery system.
Northshore Recovery High School is a public high school in Beverly, Massachusetts where teens work to recover from drug addictions while earning their diplomas.
Principal and Founder Michelle Lipinski founded the school in order to create a safe and supportive community, while placing a high value on education and accountability.
“As this generation comes of age into a society facing an opioid epidemic, we believe the power of storytelling – and collaboration with experts like NIDA and Michelle – will be a wake-up call for audiences, parents and community to break the stigma, foster empathy and expand access to treatment for young people,” said Chris McCarthy, President of ViacomCBS Entertainment & Youth Group.
"It has been a privilege to earn the trust of Michelle and these remarkable teens who bravely share their journeys and demonstrate such extraordinary resilience as they work to overcome addiction,” said Nina L. Diaz, President and Chief Creative Content Officer, ViacomCBS Entertainment & Youth Group.
“We are honored to bring their powerful stories to the forefront.”
“When I opened Recovery High, my goal was to create a community for students to safely recover from addiction,” said Lipinski.
“I’m grateful to partner with MTV in order to tell this story of resilience and showcase that recovery is possible with the right community. I hope we can be a model of other schools and communities who are addressing this issue.”
“Principal Michelle Lipinski and the students of Recovery High School instilled their trust in me, granting unprecedented access into their lives and allowing this docu-series to showcase the pain of teenage addiction and the joy of recovery,” said Liss.
“I'm grateful that MTV is reviving this franchise with 16 and Recovering and is taking on one of the most critical issues today facing young people and their families.”
In this limited series, audiences will follow students and families’ paths to recovery as they are guided by faculty members – who have gone through their own experiences with addiction – including the heartbreaking loss of life to hopeful early signs of recovery.
Further, the students’ experiences provide a window into the complexities of treatment, including healthcare coverage and financial barriers, and the difficulties of navigating the judicial system.
Join in on the conversation using #16andRecovering.
To take action and find resources on substance use disorders and emotional health, visit 16andRecovering.com.
16 & Recovering is directed by Liss who executive produced alongside Devin Amar for Scheme Engine, Regina K. Scully and the Artemis Rising Foundation and The LEF Foundation. Lily Neumeyer and Benjamin Hurvitz are executive producers for MTV.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.