The forthcoming company will back new and existing projects from the Smith family, including short and mid-form digital content, as well as traditional TV shows and movies, in an effort to execute their global content. Westbrook Inc. will begin launching content this month.
“We are so excited to announce this new venture and fully immerse ourselves in all areas of the media and entertainment space,” Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith said in a statement. “With our incredible team of family, chosen family, and longtime business partners, Westbrook Inc.’s mission is to spread positive ideas, art, and products that entertain and empower the greatest number of lives, inspiring the next generation of artists to do good in the world.”
Content from the newly formed Westbrook Studios will put an emphasis on developing feature films, TV series and documentaries from diverse voices. It will also back projects as starring vehicles for Will Smith and the family’s network within Hollywood. The studio announced Wednesday it is bringing in Steve Bender in the role of development finance.
Westbrook Studios currently produces the Facebook Watch series “Red Table Talk” with Jada Pinkett Smith, Willow Smith and Adrienne Banfield-Norris. The company, under the direction of Lukas Kaiser and Sadao Turner, was also responsible for Will Smith’s buzzy foray into social media, the social media campaign around Disney’s box office hit “Aladdin,” as well as the social channels for Jada Pinkett Smith, Red Table Talk, and Jaden Smith’s water brand Just Water.
Westbrook Inc. announced a number of new hires Wednesday, including CEO Kosaku Yada. He will be joined by president Tera Hanks, COO Gila Jones, CFO Kevin McDonald and VP of business development Jesse Uram.
A handful of subsidiary studios, including Overbrook Entertainment, Red Table Talk Enterprises, Westbrook Studios, Westbrook Media, and merchandise business Good Goods, will fall under the Westbrook Inc. umbrella. Overbrook Entertainment, founded by Will Smith and James Lassiter, has generated nearly $4 billion in box office ticket sales since it was established in 1997. The studio has backed a number of Will Smith’s hits like “Men in Black II,” “Hitch,” and “I Am Legend,” as well as breakouts like YouTube Red’s “Cobra Kai” and “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.”