Jeff Clanagan is ready to use his faith to make a lot more money in Hollywood. Jeff Clanagan, former concert promoter, video distributor and co-founder of Urbanworks Entertainment, has partnered with 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment division’s FoxFaith to make numerous Gospel-themed films.
Similar to Tyler Perry’s cash-cow movies, Jeff Clanagan is positioning his company, CodeBlack Entertainment, to produce inspirational films that will put churchgoers in theatre seats.
‘Mama I Want to Sing,’ starring R&B singers Ciara and Patti LaBelle, is the first movie to be released by the new partners. The film hits theatres in March 2008. Following ‘Mama I Want To Sing,‘ he’ll release former stage play, ‘A Good Man Is Hard to Find.‘ Then, he will begin production on several faith-based novels by ReShonda Tate Billingsley (‘Let the Church Say Amen‘ and ‘Blessings in Disguise‘).
In a Los Angeles Times article, Jeff Clanagan said, ‘Tyler Perry was a pioneer in showing that gospel entertainment was more commercial than anyone had ever thought. Faith-based product will be our bread and butter.’
From his humble beginnings as a video distributor who just happened to land video distribution rights to ‘The Cosby Show‘ and ‘Fat Albert,’ Jeff Clanagan has big plans for CodeBlack Entertainment. Ultimately, he plans to build a studio that produces, markets and distributes theatrical movies for Blacks and Latinos.
FoxFaith was created to capitalize on the Christian market by making smaller-budget films with limited theatrical release. They’ve already distributed several Christian films including the DVD of T.D. Jakes‘ ‘Woman Thou Art Loosed.‘
Tyler Perry’s movies are expected to generate $500 million to $600 million over a five-year period, according to Lion’s Gate, the studio that grabbed Tyler Perry’s movies.
Jeff Clanagan’s movies will be produced for less than $7 million each.