The owner of Will Packer Productions recently produced Girls Trip—the No. 1 live-action comedy of 2017—showing that a film starring four black women could score big at the box office.
Two big film premieres: Breaking In (with Gabrielle Union, being released Mother’s Day weekend) and Night School (with Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish, the breakout star of Girls Trip, coming out this fall). Also expect scripted and nonscripted shows for Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network, and digital series with partners such as Roma Downey and Hart.
“When I was a sophomore at Florida A&M University, I helped my classmate, Rob Hardy, ‘produce’ an independent film called Chocolate City—a coming-of-age story about life at our historically black college. We sent the film to every studio and agency in Hollywood. … Absolutely no one wanted it. But we got a huge response on campus; we were giving these college kids a story that they weren’t getting anywhere else. I saw that there was an immense market of people out there who weren’t seeing their stories or their lives reflected in mainstream entertainment. So, I moved to Atlanta and co-founded an indie film production company with the goal of getting these stories told. What I learned along the way—as I made bigger films and started working more closely with the major film studios—was that good stories are universal. I may be coming from a particular perspective, but if the story is good, it’s going to sell to everyone.”
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