Barry Jenkins—the visionary behind films like If Beale Street Could Talk and Moonlight—will expand his imprint by bringing more powerful stories to the small screen. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the filmmaker has inked a production deal with HBO and HBO Max.
Under the two-year pact—which he made through his production company Pastel—the Oscar-winning producer will team up with the entertainment company A24 for the creation of an array of projects. Jenkins has used Pastel as a vessel to amplify the work of underrepresented creators and provide a platform where they can bring their diverse perspectives to the table.
In an interview with Guardian, Jenkins shared that he’s excited to see a reemergence of a Black film renaissance. “I think there’s something about the present moment that is collectively inspiring,” he said. “I don’t think any one of us sees the success of another and feels anything but joy and pride. And I can see that the generation behind us, they see that, and they feed off it. When you climb the ladder, you send it back down. And that’s exactly what’s been happening for the last 10 to 15 years.” News about the deal comes ahead of the May 14 debut of The Underground Railroad; an Amazon series directed by Jenkins that was inspired by Colson Whitehead’s award-winning novel.
Black creators have been securing major deals with several leading companies in the realm of entertainment. In March, it was announced actress and producer Issa Rae expanded her production deal with WarnerMedia. Through the partnership—which was made under her multimedia imprint Hoorae—Rae will develop television and film projects for Warner Bros., HBO, HBO Max and other WarnerMedia subsidiaries. Filmmaker Ryan Coogler recently signed a multi-year production deal with Disney TV to develop projects for TV.