By NEKESA MUMBI MOODY, Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) — Get ready for more drama from Sylvester, Twan and Pimp Lucius — R. Kelly is delivering more chapters of "Trapped in the Closet."
The outrageous musical series started off as five videos for the R&B singer's dramatic cliffhanger songs in 2007. It quickly became a cult classic, and he added more chapters, put the accompanying videos on a DVD and also teamed up with IFC to premiere the series. It grew to 22 chapters.
For the next chapters, Kelly is teaming up with IFC again. He said in a statement Wednesday: "The Alien is back and It has brought friends along."
"When I first began experiencing the unknown journey of writing 'Trapped in the Closet,' I knew after the first chapter that I had tapped into something that was not of this earth," he said. "'Trapped in the Closet' fans put on your seatbelts 'cause 'Trapped in the Closet' is coming to take you away."
Ann Carli, the producer of "Trapped," said filming for the new chapters will begin in Chicago in the spring and be out by the fall, along with new characters.
"You'll see pretty much most of the main characters back, and you'll find out pretty early on what the package is, and whose got the package," said Carli, referring to the cliffhanger of the last chapter.
Carli said in a phone interview Wednesday that the series almost didn't get made. When Kelly presented his 16-minute "Trapped" song to his Jive record company at the time, the label didn't know what to do with it, Carli said.
She pushed to make a series of videos like a movie to accompany it, and the song and the videos became a sensation.
But despite its success, more chapters almost didn't happen. It wasn't until an interview when Kelly said that money was the holdup to producing more installments that offers flooded in to produce them, Carli said.
"I got calls from all over the world," she said.
IFC said "Trapped" gave the network its biggest online audience ever. A DVD of the new chapters should be released by the holidays, Carli said.
Meanwhile, Kelly is to release his new album, "Write Me Back," in the summer. His memoir, "Soulacoaster: The Diary of Me," is due out in June.
Carli said the new album is a sequel of sorts to his Grammy-nominated "Love Letter."
"There's a lot of '70s influenced music," she said. "He had a real ball kind of just stretching himself and exploring some of the music that he loves."
Nekesa Mumbi Moody is the AP's music editor. Follow her on http://www.twitter.com/nekesamumbi
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