Top 50 Power Brokers in Hollywood

These luminaries wield unprecedented clout in film and television

year in Norbit, a concept he created with his brother, Charlie, and the next installment of Beverly Hills Cop.

10 Tyra Banks Founder & CEO, Bankable Productions Age: 33 She’s the creator, host, and executive producer of America’s Next Top Model and The Tyra Banks Show. Under her production company, Bankable Productions, The Tyra Banks Show has managed to capture more than 2 million women aged 18 to 34 each week, making it the top show in first-run syndication with this highly-coveted audience. She also enjoyed her most successful finale yet for ANTM: This past December, the season-ender for Cycle 7 marked the biggest night in the new CW network’s history and beat two of the five television networks on that night.

How We Selected Our POWER BROKERS

So how did BLACK ENTERPRISE identify the power players? In an exhaustive search, our editorial team contacted movie studios, television networks, and industry insiders and pored over box-office sales and television ratings reports. We also consulted with national organizations such as the Directors Guild of America, Screen Actors Guild, Film Life and HBO American Black Film Festival, Black Filmmakers Association, Black Filmmakers Forum, Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association, and the NAACP — which hosts the annual Image Awards. As a result, we found people who generate billions in box-office, advertising, and subscription dollars. We identified members of the Top 50 based of the following criteria:

Actors, directors, creators, and producers were chosen for their ability to significantly influence the green-lighting and production process related to motion pictures and television programs. All of them control production companies or have had a hand in the development of their projects. They’re all in high demand from studios and networks and command top fees based on a consistent track record of involvement with popular television programs that produce top ratings or blockbuster movies that gross huge box-office receipts. Awards received were considered, insofar as they added prestige to projects or significantly increased box-office draw.

Corporate executives who were selected are top managers at the senior vice president level or higher. All of them are key execs at major studios and networks who can influence the green-lighting of motion pictures and television shows or can make the final decision related to the production, marketing, or distribution of projects as well as the acquisition of talent and properties.

Agents and lawyers who were chosen represent A-list actors, directors, producers, and screenwriters and broker some of the industry’s biggest deals. In addition to handling negotiations for their clients, they also play a role in the packaging of production deals with studios on behalf of their clients.

Independent entrepreneurs who made the list must control their own production companies, distribution entities, or studios and have a proven record of developing projects that have been profitable, enabling them to sign multipicture or multiprogram deals with major studios and networks.

Check out our interactive timeline chronicling important markers in blacks’rise in Tinseltown at blackenterprise.com/hollywood.

The Godfathers

When today’s black entertainment elite need advice, they reach out to one of two men:

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