Tyler Perry: Be it film, theater, or television, Tyler Perry has demonstrated his ability to draw audiences. The multiplatform writer, director, actor, and producer has enjoyed success with his productions, including Diary of a Mad Black Woman and Madea’s Family Reunion, which have collectively generated more than $200 million in ticket sales. More recently, Perry signed a $200 million, 100-episode deal to produce Tyler Perry’s House of Payne, a TV show that depicts a multigenerational blue-collar African American family. These relatively low-budget yet highly profitable ventures have garnered Perry enough clout to rank him among Hollywood’s elite.
Samuel L. Jackson: An Oscar nominee for best supporting actor for Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, a four-time Golden Globe nominee, and winner of a prestigious special jury prize created specifically for his performance in Jungle Fever at the Cannes Film Festival, Samuel L. Jackson is one of the industry’s most versatile performers. He’s also one of the most reliable at the box office. The 35-year veteran’s films have grossed more than $2 billion. His roster of box office hits includes A Time to Kill, the Star Wars prequels, S.W.A.T., The Incredibles, Coach Carter, 1408, and Kasi Lemmons’ critically acclaimed indie Eve’s Bayou. Jackson shows no signs of slowing up: he will next appear in the highly anticipated Jumper.
Chris Rock: Over a span of 20 years, Chris Rock has developed an impressive résumé: stand-up comedian, Saturday Night Live regular, Academy Awards emcee, and motion picture actor and director. His prowess has earned him three Emmy awards and 12 additional nominations for The Chris Rock Show and his specials Chris Rock: Never Scared, Chris Rock: Bigger and Blacker; and Chris Rock: Bring The Pain; all of which aired on cable television network HBO. In 2005, he entered the TV sitcom world as creator, executive producer, writer, and narrator of the critically acclaimed CW series Everybody Hates Chris. Last year Rock directed and starred in the romantic comedy I Think I Love My Wife for the big screen. Rock also provided the voice of Mooseblood in the hit animated film Bee Movie, which grossed more than $274 million worldwide.
Beyoncé Knowles: She may be best known for her vocals but Beyoncé Knowles has scored big on the silver screen as well. This Texas native first came to fame a decade ago as the lead singer of the girl group Destiny’s Child. After making her acting debut in the MTV made-for-television movie Carmen: A Hip Hopera, Knowles has gone on to co-star in blockbusters such as Austin Powers: Goldmember (2002) with Saturday Night Live alum Mike Myers and the remake of The Pink Panther (2006) with Steve Martin. Thus far, her biggest role is that of Deena Jones in the 2006 film Dreamgirls, which grossed $154.6 million worldwide and garnered her two Golden Globe nominations-for Best Actress: Motion Picture Musical or Comedy and Best Original Song for “Listen.”
Halle Berry: Halle Berry’s strong performances in Paramount’s Things We Lost in the Fire and Sony’s Perfect Stranger demonstrate why she