HBO and Russell Simmons’ new media company All Def Digital (ADD) ink an overall first-look production and development deal. ADD, Simmons and his team will make and develop television projects for HBO. Simmons already has five projects in the works with the television network.
“HBO has been like a home to me for a generation,” says Simmons. “I am enormously proud of the broad range of programming they have nurtured. Together, we have discovered new voices and helped launch emerging artists that deserved a mainstream platform. I am even more excited by the next generation of talent and shows that we are developing through All Def Digital TV.”
Here are the five current projects:
* A new series that curates the best acts from All Def Digital’s weekly live comedy night. Every week, ADD produces a live event in Hollywood featuring the best new comedians in the country.
* HBO and ADD are also developing “These Are My Friends,” a new comedy series created by independent filmmaker Shaka King that takes an original and authentic look at hip-hop culture. The series follows four real-life rap and hip-hop artists as they struggle to keep their dream alive. Real friends, real rappers, real comedy, real life.
* A comedy series through ADD with the Broken Lizard comedy troupe, which brought audiences cult classics like “Super Troopers” and “Beerfest.” “The Broken Lizard Show” will take an innovative and comedic look at race when, hundreds of years in the future, a space ship exploring the galaxy discovers the last white man in the universe.
* Simmons is also executive producing the highly-anticipated HBO limited series “Codes of Conduct,” directed and developed by Academy Award®-winner Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave”). The six-episode limited series is written by McQueen and screenwriter Matthew Michael Carnahan (“World War Z”), and executive produced by McQueen, Simmons, Iain Canning (“The King’s Speech”), Emile Sherman (“The King’s Speech”) and Alan Poul (HBO’s “The Newsroom”). “Codes of Conduct” stars newcomer Devon Terrell as a young man with a mysterious past who enters New York’s high society. Paul Dano, Helena Bonham Carter and Rebecca Hall are also featured.
* Simmons, alongside Stan Lathan, is producing a Def Comedy Jam 25th Anniversary Special that will feature an all-star lineup of comedians celebrating the longest-running and most influential comedy showcase on cable television.