EXCLUSIVE: Production and management company The Cartel has entered into an agreement with New York Times bestselling author Brenda Jackson and writer-producer Bobby Smith Jr to option and acquire over 25 of the author’s novels. Jackson’s canon will be adapted for film and TV.
Among Jackson’s best-known works included in the deal are The Catalina Cove series of books, The Perfect series, The Playa’s series, The Big Girl series, The Madaris’ Family, as well as Men of Action books.
Stan Spry, Eric Woods, Jeff Holland and Ryan Saul will produce for Cartel, along with Jackson and Smith’s Bobby Smith Jr Productions.
“I am incredibly excited to be embarking on this magnificent journey with Stan, Ryan, The Cartel, and the incomparable Brenda Jackson of course,” said Smith.
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Said Jackson: “It is with great pleasure that I look forward to working with The Cartel and the accomplished Bobby Smith Jr., to bring more of my romance novels to life on the screen. This is an exciting moment.”
On behalf of The Cartel, Saul added, “Brenda is one of the more powerful Black voices of our time, and is prolific not only in her writing, but in the community as well. The Cartel couldn’t be more excited to be working in collaboration with both her and Bobby. The culmination of these two powerful voices, in one of the most successful genres from books to the screen could not be more exciting for us.”
Jackson is also a USA Today bestselling author of more than 140 novels and novellas with over 15 million books in print. She was the first African-American romance author to make the USA Today and New York Times bestseller list, and is hailed as one of the most popular African-American authors of romance and women’s fiction. An NAACP Image Award finalist, Jackson is the recipient of numerous awards including the Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award, and has had numerous books adapted into movies including One Special Moment, Truly Everlasting and A Brother’s Honor.
Smith most recently set up the television remake of Jason’s Lyric at MGM/Orion Television, and a multicultural version of Les Miserables at Westbrook TV with Recording Academy head Harvey Mason Jr. On the feature side, Smith recently finished writing Inner City Symphony for Disney+, and recently completed the sci-fi thriller Burst for ACJ Film Fund and Sobini Films.
The Cartel has produced and financed more than 120 films, TV movies and series over the last decade including the animated series Twelve Forever for Netflix, Creepshow for AMC’s horror streaming platform Shudder, former Blink-182 frontman Tom DeLonge’s feature film directorial debut Monsters of California, and Syfy’s new 10-episode series Day of the Dead.
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