Filmmakers put their faith in the Gospel
“We lived comfortably in college”
Jeff Clanagan wants to ride Tyler Perry's coattails. So does 20th Century Fox.
They are pairing up to make several Gospel-inspired films that are much like the ones that have made Perry a sensation. Perry, a 37-year-old producer, writer, director and star, has shown Hollywood the gold to be mined from Gospel-infused entertainment.
Fox and Clanagan are pinning their initial hopes on a movie version of the popular play 'Mama I Want to Sing.' Scheduled to come out in March, starring R&B singers Ciara and Patty LaBelle, 'Mama' is the first of several films that Clanagan will make under a deal with Fox Home Entertainment division FoxFaith. Clanagan's goal is to build a full-fledged studio that makes, markets and distributes theatrical movies for African American and Latino audiences. His company, Codeblack Entertainment, already has seen success by making an eclectic group of low-budget movies and distributing them on DVD, such as Steve Harvey's comedy series. He's made a couple of faith-based films on DVD, including 'Preaching to the Choir.' 'These movies are not really recognized by the Hollywood elite,' Clanagan said. ' 'Mama' takes it to another level.' After 'Mama,' Clanagan will release 'A Good Man Is Hard to Find,' which has grossed $10 million as a stage play. Clanagan will begin production on several faith-inspired novels by ReShonda Tate Billingsley, such as 'Let the Church Say Amen' and 'Blessings in Disguise.' Read more
Join the discussion below, or Read more at Los Angeles Times.
#1 Aug 11, 2007
Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Leroy E. Williams, Jr. I am a gospel playwright, actor, producer, director and the founder/president of the Pensacola Community Arts & Recreation Association (PCARA). My gospel stage-plays have been compared and ranked with the best, i.e., Tyler Perry. I am very proud to announce that I have released to DVD four of my most recent performed stage-plays as follows: The Unbelievable Man, A Message In The Storm, Holier Than Thou and The Boogie Woogie Preacher. Please take a moment from your very busy schedule and visit my website ( pcaraonline.com ) for a preview of these productions. I am currently writing a new gospel stage-play entitled " Too Blessed To Be Stressed!". This production will debut February 1 thru February 3, 2008, in Pensacola, FL.
I need your help. It would be a great honor and privilege for me to meet with Tyler Perry to discuss how I can move my God given talent to the next level with his guidance. I would also like to propose to Mr. Perry to co-write a gospel stage-play entitled, "The Blind Date" (Madea Meets The Boogie Woogie Preacher). Any assistance you can provide me to make this dream come true will be greatly appreciated and a blessing from God.
Thank you in advance for your consideration and assistance.
Leroy E. Williams, Jr.
Playwright, Actor, Director & Producer
#2 Aug 11, 2007
That's great.I'm glad their is still some people who are trying to represent Christianity in Hollywood.
#3 Aug 18, 2007
I want to thank codeblack for what they are doing, I have been trying to get an meeting with you and was unable. I'm the playwright of two plays "Can A Hoochie Become First Lady" and the first Teen Family stage play "Mama! I'm Your Child" that is one that everyfamily needs to see. I would like to meet with you and your team to work of these project with me. I'm currently doing a lot of writing for other playwright that want me to be listed as a ghostwriter it's time my credit be known for the work I do, I have a new project coming out in 2008 that will sale out every venture. It will be annouced later as my atty is prepareing the national annuncment. Thanks you for your work and I look forward to working with you.
"The Barefoot Director"
Playwright, Actor, Director & Producer
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