Ava DuVernay Inks $100 Million Deal With Warner Bros TV

Ava DuVernay at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' 10th annual Governors Awards.
Kevin Winter / Getty Images

Ava DuVernay has signed her first multi-year studio production deal. The Emmy-winning and Oscar-nominated writer, producer, and director has partnered with Warner Bros. Television to create new content, according to a report from Deadline.

Under this agreement, DuVernay and her company, Forward Movement, will be tasked with creating and developing a host of new projects for the studio, including, but not limited to documentaries, drama series, comedy titles, and digital content. The new partnership serves as an extension to DuVernay’s current relationship with Warner Bros. TV, as she has been working with the company for years. DuVernay serves as executive producer of OWN’s Queen Sugar and CBS’ The Red Line, which are both distributed by the television company.

“Ava DuVernay is one of the leading lights in our industry, a brilliantly talented writer, producer, director and entrepreneur whose ability to inspire with her art is exceeded only by her ability to entertain. We have had the great pleasure of working with her on Queen Sugar and The Red Line, and we are extremely excited about the new stories she has to tell,” Peter Roth, WBTV chief content officer, said in the official deal announcement.

DuVernay also shared the news across her social media platforms; she took to Instagram to post a side-by-side photo of herself and the Warner Bros. logo.

“Couldn’t be happier to call Warner Bros. TV my production home,” she wrote in the caption of the post.

It’s no secret that DuVernay has made it a goal to create content that tells the stories of discrimination faced by black people and people of color, she has just wrapped the Netflix miniseries, Central Park Five, and is reportedly working on a comedy based on the life of former NFL star and activist Colin Kaepernick.

“Warner Bros is a terrific partner about matters of visibility and belonging for all kinds and cultures of people, which is our mission at Forward Movement,” she told Deadline.

She has directed movies like Middle of Nowhere, Selma, and A Wrinkle in Time. Her 2016 documentary, 13th, which is an exploration of the criminal justice system’s violations of the 13th Amendment, earned her an Oscar nomination.

While talking about the documentary with Variety, she shared the one thing that came as a surprise while making 13th.

“Learning about ALEC [the American Legislative Exchange Council], learning about this shadowy group that was pulling the strings of politicians from the right, was really frightening and enlightening,” she said.

The deal will go into effect in January, 2019.