Ebony/Jet Entertainment taps Codeblack for film partnership


Mumbai: Codeblack Entertainment has entered into a partnership with Ebony/Jet Entertainment Group, LLC. The agreement brings the global brand to the creation, development, production, marketing and distribution of existing and future innovative Codeblack Entertainment properties.

"This extraordinary partnership clearly demonstrates how two strong brands will meet increasing consumer demand in the ever-changing digital landscape for ongoing growth opportunities within the African-American community and beyond," said Johnson Publishing Company Inc. chairman and CEO Johnson Rice.

Codeblack Enterprises chairman & CEO Jeff Clanagan says, "Our focus and drive since Codeblack’s inception, which includes our commitment to the positive representation of African Americans in film, has enabled us to become the preeminent global distributor of urban-themed titles. There is an enormous demand for African-American content, which we’ve illustrated with our proven track record of releasing coveted, qualitative projects through theatrical, DVD, digital and broadcast channels."

According to Clanagan, the partnership cements Codeblack’s commitment to serving the global community with quality urban films, as well as providing the African-American community’s most influential and relevant brands with an innovative new vehicle for brand extension, all while delivering Codeblack’s expansive library to the widest possible audience. "The Ebony and Jet brands, ubiquitous for dedication to African-American ideals, enables us to build on what we’ve accomplished, and set a course that will change the urban film landscape for decades to come," he adds.

The first projects to be released under the partnership are the gripping documentaries, "Why We Laugh" and "Barack Obama: The Man and His Journey". The former, a recent recipient of a coveted nod at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival, is an introspective look at black comedy’s past, present and future through the eyes of its most iconic figures, including interviews with Bill Cosby, Chris Rock, Kwesi Mfume, Keenan Ivory Wayans, D.L. Hughley and Michael Eric Dyson.

"Barack Obama: The Man and His Journey" is a follow up to the highly successful Veridicus Films release, "Barack Obama: Who Is This Guy?" which explored pre-election.  

Also produced by Veridicus Films and coming to stores 20 January, ‘Journey’ is a unique and compelling exploration of the dynamics of change in America through the magnified lens of this historic political season, providing intimate insight into the upward journey of President Elect Barack Obama. Narrated by actor Blair Underwood, the film is the first full-length DVD documentary about Obama, and features interviews with a diverse cross-section of some of America’s most prominent and recognizable personalities like Martin Luther King III, George Lopez, Hill Harper, Tom Joyner, Roland Martin and Robert Kiyosaki.

‘Journey’ also features a previously unreleased original song composed and performed by Brian McKnight. The song, titled "Yes We Can", was inspired by President Elect Obama’s historic victory, and will be available exclusively as a bonus track in limited quantity on the DVD and for download on Codeblack’s website.

Codeblack will produce up to six additional titles by the end of 2009 to be distributed via broadcast/VOD, DVD, internet, digital, mobile and all future digital media.