Issa Rae's ColorCreative Lands Deal with Columbia Pictures To Boost Diverse Screenwriters
This unique opportunity contributes to the entertainment industry shifting to develop more projects that give emerging talent the platform they deserve.
Issa Rae is making serious year-end moves with her production company, ColorCreative.
Her platform has locked in a multi-picture production deal with Columbia Pictures, Variety reports. Under the agreement, ColorCreative will be backing projects from emerging and diverse screenwriters.
This is a unique opportunity and it comes as no surprise that Rae will be one of many in the entertainment industry helming its shift to develop and back more films and shows that give diverse talent the platform they deserve—in front of and behind the camera.
Variety notes that despite Black Panther and Crazy Rich Asians' success at the box office this year, a recent report from USC says that only 29.3 percent of characters in the top 100 grossing movies of 2017 were from communities of color. This deal with Rae's ColorCreative to amplify authentic voices will not just be an anomaly—hopefully.
Participants will be announced in 2019 and will work with Rae and the production company to develop and write features based on the participants' original concepts.
Bryan Smiley, VP of production at Columbia Pictures, spearheaded the deal and will oversee production and development with ColorCreative. Sara Rastogi, ColorCreative's new VP of production will also help shepherd the deal for the company with ColorCreative's COO, Deniese Davis.
"Working with Bryan Smiley and Columbia Pictures to further the mission ColorCreative set out to achieve four years ago in creating access for underrepresented writers, has been a dream come true," Rae says in a statement. "All of the projects we are working on are fresh and promising and we can't wait to continue the work. We hope to set a precedent and inspire the industry at large to invest in undiscovered talent, original IP, and fresh stories and perspectives."
"Sara's commitment to discovering and elevating budding voices along with her out-of-the-box thinking has made her a perfect and insightful addition to our team."