'Girls Trip' Director Staffs Up Production Company

Nikki Reed_Malcolm D. Lee_Melanie Clark_Split - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of Blackmaled Productions(2); Getty Images

Malcolm D. Lee's Blackmaled Productions has enlisted Nikki Reed to head TV and promoted Melanie Clark on its film side.

Malcolm D. Lee has filled out his key executive ranks at Universal.

The Girls Trip director, who has both a film and TV pact with the NBCUniversal-owned studio, has hired Nikki Reed and promoted Melanie Clark at his Blackmaled Productions banner.

Reed will head Blackmaled's newly launched TV production division, which recently inked a first-look deal with Universal Television to create, develop and exec produce new projects for the studio. Reed most recently was vp live-action series development for Nickelodeon, where she oversaw the Viacom-owned kids-focused cabler's development. She will be based at Blackmaled's Los Angeles office.

“I’m excited to join Malcolm at Blackmaled Productions as he extends his brand of storytelling from film into television,” said Reed. “He has been an exciting filmmaker for many years and I feel fortunate to join him in bringing his vision and voice to new platforms with the support of the talented executive team at Universal Television.”

Clark, who was hired last year as Blackmaled's senior vp business development, has been promoted to senior vp production and development for the company's feature film division. She will continue to focus on business development under the company's Universal Pictures' first-look deal while also adding oversight of digital and theater projects. She continues to be based in Blackmaled's New York office.

"I am honored to contribute to the magic of moviemaking, and to have the ability to bring diverse voices to the screen through Blackmaled Productions,” Clark said. “As we have seen, representation matters. And, through our collective vision, and broad distribution platforms, including our strong relationship with Universal Pictures, we will build upon Malcolm’s already powerful body of work and continue to drive cultural impact.”

Lee's feature work includes directing and producing Universal Pictures' breakout Girls Trip, starring Tiffany Haddish, Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall and Queen Latifah. The film, which bowed in July 2017, was the first with a full African-American creative team in front of and behind the camera to top the $100 million mark at the box office. His credits also include The Best Man, Undercover Brother, Roll Bounce, Soul Men, The Best Man Holiday and Barbershop: The Next Cut. Next up, Lee will reteam with Haddish for the feature Night School, also starring Kevin Hart. He also is in development on the next installment of the Best Man franchise, The Best Man Wedding, and I Almost Forgot About You, starring Viola Davis. On the small screen, Lee has directed episodes of Shots Fired and Everybody Hates Chris.

 “I am thrilled to be in business with both of these extraordinary women," Lee said. "Melanie Clark has already played a pivotal role in the development of numerous projects and the growth and expansion of the Blackmaled brand. I am lucky to have her in this new role. Nikki Reed has an impressive track record across all facets of the television business. The relationships and skills she brings, along with our shared vision for this new venture, plus the support and freedom provided by Universal Television, promise to be a winning combination.”