‘Queens’ locks in laffs

'Beyond Bars' set at Tennessee Prison for Women

In a follow-up to his “The Original Kings of Comedy,” Walter Latham will produce “Queens of Comedy: Beyond Bars,” a feature film of female comedians performing at the Tennessee Prison for Women.

Latham has lined up Adele Givens, Sommore and Ms. Laura to host two shows in October before some 500 inmates in the lunch room at the Nashville prison. All three comediennes took part in Latham’s “Queens of Comedy” tour in 2000 and the subsequent Showtime special.

“Each of the performers has come from the same kind of background as the inmates,” Latham told Daily Variety. “They just took the right turn.”

Latham will fully finance the feature and plans to seek distribution via the festival circuit. His original two-year Kings of Comedy tour, starring Steve Harvey, Bernie Mac, D.L. Hughley and Cedric the Entertainer, grossed $39 million, and the Paramount/MTV Films pic of the tour grossed more than $38 million.

Latham was a co-producer on the 2002 feature “Martin Lawrence Live: Runteldat” and has produced comedy tours including the Crown Royal Comedy Soul Festival and the upcoming Bad Boys of Comedy Tour and the Latin Kings of Comedy, both sponsored by Crown Royal.

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