Patrissa Cullors, a founding woman of Black Lives Matter, was recently signed by Warner Brothers to a multiyear deal across all of its programming platforms that “encompasses scripted and unscripted series, longform series, animated and kids programming, as well as digital content.”
In a statement released by Cullors after the signing, she mentioned that a reason for celebration is that “Black voices, especially Black voices who have been historically marginalized, are important and integral to today’s storytelling.”
Cullors’ agreement encompasses scripted and unscripted series, longform series, animated and kids programming, as well as digital content. Together, WBTVG and Cullors will look to amplify the work of the Black Lives Matter, which Cullors started alongside Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi back in 2013, and create more opportunities for prominent Black storytelling. Precise terms for the deal have not been disclosed.
“Black voices, especially Black voices who have been historically marginalized, are important and integral to today’s storytelling. Our perspective and amplification is necessary and vital to helping shape a new narrative for our families and communities.”
Cullors said in a video from 2015 that she and her fellow organizers are “trained Marxists” – making clear their movement’s ideological foundation, according to a report. Cullors, 36, was the protégé of Eric Mann, former agitator of the Weather Underground domestic terror organization, and spent years absorbing the Marxist-Leninist ideology that shaped her worldview, Breitbart News reported.
“The first thing, I think, is that we actually do have an ideological frame. Myself and Alicia in particular are trained organizers,” she said, referring to BLM co-founder Alicia Garza.
“We are trained Marxists. We are super-versed on, sort of, ideological theories. And I think that what we really tried to do is build a movement that could be utilized by many, many black folk,” Cullors added in the interview with Jared Ball of The Real News Network.
See those comments at 7:08 in the video imbedded below.
But if you log onto any Hulu account you may notice that a unique feed called Black Stories will populate one of the scrolls. A similar feature appears in Amazon’s Prime Video feed, with a scroll for Black Voices presenting a bevy of black-produced, black-directed, and black-acted shows and films. Netflix also cut right to the chase; they had an entire genre created for Black Lives Matter. If black voices are absent or underrepresented in the media, it is hard to tell by looking at every major media presence.
Cullors’ signing is reminiscent of a similar deal between Disney and former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick. In early July, the former signed a deal with the latter in which he “will see his projects distributed across all Disney platforms which include ESPN, Hulu, The Undefeated, Pixar, and The Walt Disney Co.” Like Cullors, Kaepernick expressed that he was excited to “elevate Black and Brown directors, creators, storytellers, and producers, and to inspire the youth with compelling and authentic perspectives.” Apparently, he had not yet seen the scroll feeds on his Netflix account at the time of making that statement.
Also this summer, Beyonce reportedly inked a deal with Disney to produce three films to the tune of $100 million. According to Wikipedia, the first of the three, Black is King, tells the story of a “prince’s journey of self-discovery… as an allegory for the African diaspora‘s journey of self-discovery, with the film acting as a clarion call to the diaspora to reclaim their identity through black pride.” It was released this past summer. Despite the fact that Black Lives Matter (of which Beyonce is an ardent supporter) rejects the practice of capitalism, she and the all-black cast of the film appear to have no qualms discovering their pride profiting off the black victim narrative and thriving off a free market venture.
And who could forget Barack and Michelle’s lucrative contract with Netflix? Their multi-year deal is reportedly worth upwards of $50 million. The Obamas will not be hurting for cash anytime soon after also landing a $65 million book deal.
While many leading black leftists are cashing their checks and the world’s largest streaming platforms are elevating countless black voices, not all black perspectives are prospering. Cullors laments that black voices are not being heard properly; one wonders if she actually means it the way she’s saying it.
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