powerful: Name a recent teen or tween hit film, and most likely, Martin Chase has had a hand in producing it. Disney’s Princess Diaries? Yep. Cheetah Girls 2? You bet. Diaries went on to gross more than $109 million in domestic box office receipts and sold more than 17 million video and DVD units. More than 7.8 million total viewers watched Cheetah Girls 2 during its premiere on the Disney Channel, making it the highest-rated original movie to air on the network. The former corporate attorney is returning to familiar territory as an independent: This year she will produce Fast Girls for Fox Searchlight Pictures.
Andrea Nelson Meigs Motion Picture Talent Agent,ICM Los Angeles Age: 38 Why she’s powerful: Christmas came early for ICM in 2006 when Nelson Meigs joined the firm as a motion picture talent agent. Nelson Meigs, who represents A-list clients such as Beyoncé and the other members of Destiny’s Child, singer-actors Chris Brown and Mario, and actress Tracee Ellis Ross, previously worked for rival firm, Creative Artists Agency. Armed with a law degree from Duke University, she left the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office to work in the entertainment industry. Today, Nelson Meigs brokers multimillion-dollar deals like Beyoncé’s role in the critically-acclaimed Dreamgirls.
Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr. Chairman & CEO, Johnson Development Corp.and Magic Johnson Enterprises Age: 47 If any studio wants to open a film, they have to go through Johnson. This basketball icon controls screens in major urban markets such as New York, Los Angeles, Cleveland, and Atlanta through AMC Magic Johnson Theaters, which began in 1994 when his development corporation formed a partnership with Sony Entertainment. Today, Johnson is the nation’s only major black exhibitor. In fact, Johnson has used his theaters to give independent African American filmmakers exposure as well as provide a host site for black film festivals. Johnson is a film producer in his own right. Since 1998, Magic Johnson Entertainment has developed television movies and theatrical releases such as Hair Show and Brown Sugar.
— Hyacinth B. Carbon
Henry McGee President, HBO Video Age: 52 Why he’s powerfu
l: Under McGee’s direction, HBO Video has employed the Internet, wireless technology and gaming devices as vehicles to expand the reach of the cable network’s entertainment properties into the marketplace. He’s responsible for the management of the cable network’s DVD and video marketing division and it is due to McGee’s efforts that straight-to-video fare is now respectable. As a result of his strategic focus, the division has moved to the forefront of the industry. In 2003, McGee launched an HBO Video label in the United Kingdom, which extended its reach into more than 90 countries.
Darrell D. Miller Managing Partner, Miller & Pliakas L.L.P. Age: 44 Why he’s powerful: For some, it would seem strange that a classically-trained singer would become a lawyer. But for Miller, it was a different way to produce a virtuoso performance. As managing partner at his own powerhouse boutique entertainment and business law firm, he represents a sterling cast of African