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John Legend and his production company are moving to ABC Studios.
The actor, singer and EGOT winner, along with partners Mike Jackson and Ty Stiklorius, has signed a three-year overall deal with ABC Studios via their Get Lifted Film Co. after a multiple-studio bidding war. They will develop scripted TV projects for all platforms exclusively for the Disney-owned studio.
“We here at Get Lifted Film Co. are thrilled to be working with ABC Studios and welcome the opportunity to tell remarkable stories that resonate with our growing audience,” Jackson said Tuesday in a statement.
Added ABC Studios president Patrick Moran: “John Legend and his Get Lifted partners, Mike Jackson and Ty Stiklorius, have a strong, contemporary point of view. Their enormous success is no surprise considering their excellent taste and ability to tell stories that are timely and unique.”
Get Lifted has produced WGN America’s Underground (for which Legend wrote the theme music and had a recurring role) and the Emmy-winning Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert for NBC. The company is also behind IFC’s upcoming sketch show Sherman’s Showcase, Pop’s docuseries Sing It On and the HBO documentaries Southern Rites and United Skates.
On the film side, Get Lifted executive produced La La Land, the 2018 Sundance entry Monster and the Barack and Michelle Obama romance Southside With You.
Get Lifted’s move to ABC Studios represents another blow for Sony, which has lost top creators including Fast and Furious director Justin Lin (to Apple) and former CSI showrunner Carol Mendelsohn (to Universal TV) in recent months. Additionally, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s Point Grey — which had offices on the Sony lot but no formal deal there — recently inked an agreement with Lionsgate.
Get Lifted, meanwhile, joins a powerhouse lineup of creators and showrunners at Disney’s ABC Studios and newly acquired 20th Century Fox TV. The media conglomerate boasts deals with the likes of John Ridley, Grey’s Anatomy showrunner Krista Vernoff and star/producer Ellen Pompeo, Carlton Cuse and Regina King (ABC Studios/ABC Signature) and Lee Daniels, Seth MacFarlane, Drew Goddard, This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman, Pretty Little Liars‘ I. Marlene King, Ilene Chaiken, Phil Lord and Chris Miller (20th TV), among others.
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