Mara Brock Akil has launched the new production company story27 under her previously announced overall deal at Netflix. In addition, Akil has hired Susie Fitzgerald as president of development and production.

“At story27, thoughtful and entertaining projects centering the humanity of the marginalized is the priority and that starts with identifying the best and most unique storytellers,” Akil said. “Susie’s artist- friendly approach coupled with her taste and extremely impressive track record allows for story27 to be a destination and home for the next wave of creatives and writers with impactful stories to tell. I’m excited to have her at both the creative and business table with me as we grow the company through our partnership with Netflix and beyond.”

Fitzgerald will oversee all film, television and digital media projects for story27. Prior to joining the company, she was executive vice president of scripted programming for AMC and SundanceTV. At AMC, she oversaw a slate that included breakout hits like “Breaking Bad,” “The Walking Dead,” “Mad Men,” and “Better Call Saul.”

“I’m incredibly honored to join Mara and help build the innovative team at story27,” said Fitzgerald. “Mara’s incisive storytelling through memorable characters, as well as her innate ability to identify and develop fresh talent, make her a visionary in the field. I look forward to working closely with her as she creates new work while collaborating with her to seek out new voices with relevant and unexplored narratives for the screen.”

Akil has set her first slate of projects for development under the deal, which can be read in full below. She has also established her offices in the historic Sugar Hill Arts District in West Adams, Los Angeles. The space now includes a writers’ colony next door as a creative space for new and veteran writers to congregate and collaborate.

“We have to lift as we climb,” said Akil. “And if we want the world to spin on its axis in a new inclusive direction, we have to mentor and create opportunities for the next generation by sharing knowledge that will help them cultivate their voices, so they can say what’s burning inside of them to say in an entertaining way. It matters what we put out into the world, and I’m so thrilled to have a passionate partner in Susie to help me manifest all of these dreams.”

story27 Development Slate:


Hour-long drama. Inspired by the real lives of iconic sports agents, Aaron and Eric Goodwin, “Agency” follows two Black brothers from Oakland whose relationships to each other and their family are tested when they form a sports agency to disrupt the industry and the culture.


Hour-long drama. In this inspired-by adaptation of Judy Blume’s YA romance novel, “Forever,” two Black high schoolers in Los Angeles navigate first love and intimacy amidst social and parental pressures.

“Astronaut Chicks”

Half-hour comedy. In a speculative near future, four young, female Black friends challenge each other to live a fly life, launch some dreams, and land on some purpose.

“Stamped from the Beginning”

In partnership with One Story Up, “Stamped from the Beginning” is the hybrid documentary feature adaptation of Dr. Ibram X. Kendi’s incisive and urgent work of the same name, which chronicles in detail the origins and evolution of racist ideas.