Tag: Lionsgate Television

Academy Award Winner Common’s Freedom Road Productions Signs Television Deal With Lionsgate

Common (via Getty Images)

by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (@lakinhutcherson)

According to Variety.com, actor, producer and Academy Award-winning musician Common has signed an overall deal with Lionsgate Television. Under the new agreement, Common’s Freedom Road Productions will develop new series projects for the studio.

“We’re thrilled to have the talented multi-hyphenate Common join our television team along with his longtime manager and producing partner Derek Dudley, president of production Shelby Stone, and creative executive Melisa Resch,” said Lionsgate executive vice president and head of worldwide scripted television Chris Selak. “Common’s expertise from working across all different artistic platforms offers a rich and exciting creative vision to our group. We look forward to the bold, premium content Freedom Road Productions will bring to our deep and diverse television slate.”

Common has starred in installments of Lionsgate’s “John Wick” and “Now You See Me” film franchises, and the Chicago native also currently stars in and executive produces “The Chi” on Showtime.

“I’m proud to expand my relationship with the innovative content creator Lionsgate,” said Common. “The studio offers a collaborative, creative freedom that is unique in the entertainment industry, which makes them a perfect partner for Freedom Road Productions. I’m looking forward to teaming up with Kevin, Chris and the Lionsgate collective on exciting and fresh television programming.”

‘Dear White People’ Series Ordered at Netflix; Justin Simien to Write and Direct

Dear White People Sundance
“Dear White People” (photo via Variety.com)

article by Daniel Holloway via Variety.com

Netflix has given a series order to “Dear White People,” an adaptation of writer and director Justin Simien’s 2014 feature film of the same name. Simien will write all 10 half-hour episodes and direct the premiere. The series will begin production later this year and debut worldwide on Netflix in 2017.

“Dear White People” tells the story of a diverse group of students of color experiencing campus life at a fictional Ivy League university dominated by white students. Devon Shepard will serve as executive producer alongside Stephanie Allain Bray and Julia Lebedev, who executive produced the film.

The series will be produced by Lionsgate Television, which also produces “Orange Is the New Black” for Netflix. Lionsgate’s Roadside Attractions released the original movie.

“Justin is a gifted storyteller whose bold, unique vision is perfectly suited to Netflix,” said Cindy Holland, vice president of original content at Netflix. “His original film ‘Dear White People’ announced the arrival of a fresh, creative voice that had everyone talking, and we’re excited to have Justin create this new series for our members worldwide.”

“We’re proud to expand our partnership with our friends at Netflix on a comedy that tackles racial themes with a combination of intelligence, honesty, irreverence and wit,” said Chris Selak, executive vice president, television, Lionsgate Television. “Our original film with Roadside Attractions catapulted ‘Dear White People’ into the national conversation about race, and Justin and the rest of the creative team have an opportunity to expand this world and bring its timely and universal themes to a global television audience.”

The film version of “Dear White People” began life in 2012 as a concept trailer, which Simien paid for with his tax refund. The crowd-funded movie went on to win the U .S. dramatic special jury award for breakthrough talent at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.

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