Lionsgate TV locks in tyke

Palmer signs talent deal with studio

In a first-of-a-kind pact for Lionsgate TV, the studio has signed “Akeelah and the Bee” star Keke Palmer to a talent/development deal.

Studio will develop both series and longform projects for the 12-year-old, who became the youngest thesp feted with a lead actor nom by the Screen Actors Guild for her perf opposite William H. Macy in the TNT made-for “The Wool Cap.” She also appeared in Lionsgate’s blockbuster comedy “Madea’s Family Reunion.”

Agreement was the result of an internal push from Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer.

“He’s really been behind her for a while now,” said Lionsgate TV prexy Kevin Beggs. “When we discover talent on the television or feature side, Jon is all about supporting it and keeping it inhouse.”

Palmer next will star in the Disney Channel two-hour “Jump.” She also has signed a recording deal with Warner’s Atlantic Records and is at work on her debut album.

Palmer’s other small-screen credits include the A&E movie “Knights of the South Bronx” and the Disney Channel pilot “Keke & Jamal.” She has guest-starred in series including “Strong Medicine,” “Cold Case,” “ER” and “Law & Order.”

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