Will Packer wasn’t satisfied with his options for setting up a new TV production pact. So he tackled the problem like an entrepreneur, setting up an unusual partnership with Discovery Communications, OWN, and Universal Pictures that gives him much more flexibility to tackle film, TV, and digital projects in all shapes and sizes, from miniseries to short-form branded digital content.The wide-ranging pact to launch Will Packer Media was unveiled Tuesday, hot on the heels of the strong box office debut...
With his films collectively earning almost $1 billion at the box office, Packer has amassed a string of big screen hits, including 2015’s “Straight Outta Compton,” 2014’s “Ride Along” and 2012’s “Think Like a Man.”
For television, Will Packer Productions executive produced two short-lived sitcoms – NBC’s “Truth Be Told” and ABC’s recent “Uncle Buck” remake – but struck critical and ratings gold with 2016’s “Roots” remake. Packer is also among the founders of Bounce TV, a digital multicast network with programming aimed at African-American viewers.
A Florida native, Packer began making films in college and later established an Atlanta-based production company, Rainforest Films, which made low-budget films targeting African-American audiences.
“It was a trial by fire,” Packer said of his early days in a 2015 Variety interview. “I learned what to do by doing the wrong thing. While I was in college I produced my first film (1994’s “Chocolate City”). I did everything wrong that could be done wrong. We shot it on Super 16-millimeter film. I think you’ve got to get some bad stuff out of you before you get to the good stuff.”
He also produced the film “Girls Trip,” and is now working on a new take on the 1990 thriller “Jacob’s Ladder.”