BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. & SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Heading into the fourth season premiere of the hit STARZ Original series “Power,” Starz and Lionsgate have signed “Power” creator, showrunner and executive producer Courtney A. Kemp to an exclusive multi-year overall deal. The collaborative nature of Kemp’s new deal expands her relationship with the company to include Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B), which allows Kemp to develop and produce new projects for Starz and other content through her End of Episode production company, while also continuing to serve in her current role as showrunner and executive producer on “Power.”
The deal was negotiated for Lionsgate by Television Group President Sandra Stern and for Starz by Senior VP Business & Legal Affairs Russell Schwartz.
The third season of “Power” delivered a record 8 million multiplatform viewers (Live + SD) per episode* and was the most watched premium television original series in 2016, behind only “Game of Thrones.”** The 10-episode fourth season returns on Sunday, June 25th airing all day with a “Power” Play marathon stunt.
“Courtney A. Kemp is the complete showrunner package, and we’re thrilled to continue collaborating with such a creative talent and outstanding producer,” said Chris Albrecht, President and CEO of Starz. “We are proud to see Courtney receive the recognition she deserves in our industry and are pleased the combined ‘power’ of Starz and Lionsgate offers even greater opportunities for her – and us – in the creative community.”
“We are longtime fans of Courtney’s thanks to her record-breaking series ‘Power’ and delighted to be working with her at the studio going forward,” said Lionsgate Television Group Chairman Kevin Beggs. “Her new deal shows the ability of our combined company to attract and nurture the top talent in the business.”
"This new deal presents a wonderful opportunity to extend my creative efforts on ‘Power’ while developing new shows for Lionsgate,” said Kemp. “I am grateful to Jon [Feltheimer], Kevin and Chris for this warm welcome to the Lionsgate family, and I'm looking forward to a continued relationship with Chris, Carmi and the entire team at Starz."
“Power” marked Courtney A. Kemp’s debut as a creator and showrunner and follows the complex character James “Ghost” St. Patrick and his attempts to move from New York’s biggest drug dealer to its biggest legit businessman. Under her leadership, the series doubled viewership from its premiere episode to its Season One finale and generated the largest concentration of African American viewership of any scripted premium series in almost a decade.*** “Power” was renewed for Seasons Four and Five following the record-shattering Season Three premiere on July 17, 2016.
For her work on the show, Marie Claire magazine named Kemp one of “The 50 Most Influential Women in America,” she was included as one of the female powerhouses on Elle Magazine’s “The Agenda,” and was named one of Ebony Magazine’s “Power 100” honorees.
Previously, Kemp was a writer and supervising producer on the celebrated television show “The Good Wife,” which went on to garner nominations for a Primetime Emmy® Award for Outstanding Drama Series and a Writers Guild Award for Dramatic Series. She also worked on ABC’s “Eli Stone,” Fox’s “Justice,” and “The Bernie Mac Show” among others. Prior to her work in television, Kemp wrote for many prestigious magazines, including GQ, Vibe and Marie Claire.
Kemp is represented by CAA and Michael Gendler of Gendler & Kelly.
Season Four picks up on the heels of James “Ghost” St. Patrick’s highly publicized arrest by his ex-girlfriend, Assistant U.S. Attorney Angela Valdes, for the murder of FBI Agent Greg Knox—a crime he did not commit. Ghost can’t outrun his past choices and mounting enemies this season, which threaten his freedom and his family’s safety at every turn. His fight for redemption brings him face-to-face with the Feds, the media, new allies, and old foes. But the biggest obstacle for Ghost remains himself and his internal struggle between the man he wants to be and the one he really is.
“Power” is a visionary drama that straddles the glamorous Manhattan lifestyles of the rich and infamous and the underworld of the international drug trade. The cast is led by Omari Hardwick as drug kingpin and nightclub impresario James “Ghost” St. Patrick, Joseph Sikora, as his brother in arms in the drug business, Tommy Egan; Naturi Naughton plays Ghost’s fierce, loyal wife Tasha St. Patrick and Lela Loren as his first love, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Angela Valdes.
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Mark Canton, Randall Emmett and Gary Lennon serve as Executive Producers on “Power.” The show is also produced by G-Unit Films and Television, the production company launched by Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson.
”Power” airs in more than 175 countries/territories worldwide. Starz retains all global distribution and home entertainment rights to the series.
Starz (www.starz.com), a Lionsgate company (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B), is a leading global media and entertainment company that provides premium subscription video programming on domestic U.S. pay television networks and produces and distributes content for worldwide audiences, including its investment in the STARZ PLAY Arabia OTT service. Starz is home to the flagship STARZ® brand with 24.3 million subscribers in the United States as of December 31, 2016, with the STARZ ENCORESM network at 31 million subscribers. Starz provides high-quality, entertaining premium subscription video programming with 17 premium pay TV channels and associated on-demand and online services, including the STARZ app. Sold through U.S. multichannel video distributors, including cable operators, satellite television providers, telecommunications companies, and other online and digital platforms, Starz offers subscribers more than 5,000 distinct premium television episodes and feature films every year and up to 1,500 every month, including STARZ Original series, first-run movies and other popular movie and television programming.
Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B) is a vertically integrated next generation global content leader with a diversified presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, premium pay television networks, home entertainment, global distribution and sales, interactive ventures and games and location-based entertainment.
With the acquisition of Starz, Lionsgate adds to its portfolio of businesses the flagship STARZ premium pay network serving 24.3 million subscribers and the STARZ ENCORE platform with 31 million subscribers. The combined company will operate five over-the-top (OTT) streaming services and the STARZ app delivering content directly to consumers.
The Company’s feature film business spans eight labels and includes the blockbuster The Hunger Games franchise, the Now You See Me series, the box office smash La La Land, which won six Academy Awards®, the hit franchise sequel John Wick: Chapter Two, double Oscar winner Hacksaw Ridge, Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween, The Shack, Saban’s Power Rangers, CBS Films/Lionsgate’s Hell or High Water, Roadside Attractions' critically-acclaimed Manchester by the Sea, Codeblack Films’ breakout concert film Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain and Pantelion Films’ Instructions Not Included, the highest-grossing Spanish-language film ever released in the U.S.
One of the largest independent television businesses in the world, Lionsgate’s slate of premium quality series encompasses nearly 90 shows on more than 40 different networks. These include the ground-breaking Orange is the New Black, the fan favorite Nashville, the syndication success The Wendy Williams Show, the hit drama The Royals, the acclaimed Casual, the breakout success Greenleaf, the network reality shows Kicking & Screaming and the eagerly-anticipated Candy Crush, and hit STARZ series including Outlander, Black Sails, Survivor’s Remorse and Power, the second highest-rated premium pay television series of 2016.
Lionsgate's home entertainment business is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD and box office-to-VOD revenue conversion rates. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of more than 16,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as a foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate, Summit Entertainment and Starz brands are synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world. www.lionsgate.com.
All sources subject to further qualifications available upon request.
*Source: Based on Starz internal estimates of linear and non-linear / time shifted results from Nielsen (NPower), and internal analysis of broadband data. Subject to further qualifications available upon request.
**Source: Nielsen NPower Live +SD P2+ Projection (000s) of episode premieres in Premium 2016
***Source: Nielsen NPower Live +7 P2+ Proj (000s) for season premiere (6/7/2014) and season finale telecasts (8/2/2014); Nielsen NPower Live +7 Black P2+ Proj (000s) of episode premiere telecasts among scripted premium series