Emmy Award winning writer Lena Waithe is on fire and has signed a first-look deal with Showtime!

Under the deal, Waithe will develop comedy and drama projects for Showtime that she will both write and produce through her company Hillman Grad Productions.

“I have been a fan of Showtime for as long as I can remember,” said Waithe. “They make shows that most networks wouldn’t touch and they’ve never been afraid of taking risks. I look forward to introducing my Showtime family to fresh and exciting new voices. I want to make content that will challenge audiences and take them places they never thought TV could go. It’s going to be a fun ride.”

“We fell in love with Lena’s voice when we ordered her pilot for ‘The Chi’ three years ago, and we have watched in awe at her powerful impact on our industry and our culture,” said Gary Levine, Showtime’s president of programming. “Lena is a creative force of nature and we are delighted that the force will be with us as she makes Showtime her creative home.”

Waithe made history last year as the first black women to win an Emmy for outstanding writing in a comedy series for her “Thanksgiving” episode in the Netflix hit series Master of None.  The episode was based on Waithe’s personal experience as a queer black woman coming out to her family over the course of several Thanksgiving dinners.  Prior to her win Waithe served as a producer on films Step Sister and Dear White People, which later became a Netflix series in which she guest starred.

Waithe is also the creator of the Showtime hit series The Chi which became Showtime’s biggest launch for a drama series in two years, and she is also set to write upcoming film helmed by Melina Matsoukas, Queen & Slim, slated to go into production in January. Last but certainly not least, Waithe will serve as executive producer and writer of the upcoming TBS series Twenties.

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About The Author

Founder, HBR Media

K. Nicole Mills is the Founder of HBR Media. She transitioned from Wall Street to television and film development, and has worked at NBCUniversal, Universal Pictures, and Showtime Networks. She currently develops digital programming for premium networks. Reach out anytime! info@hbrmedia.org

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