Laurene Powell Jobs Invests in Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine
Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine has received funding from Laurene Powell Jobs’ Emerson Collective and a subsequent investment from Otter Media.
The strategic investments, announced on Wednesday, are designed to support two-year-old Hello Sunshine’s growth in the creation of stories celebrating women and distributed across multiple platforms. The values of the investments were not disclosed.
“We very intentionally chose strategic investors who passionately and unequivocally support our mission of changing the landscape for women by putting them at the center of every narrative we create, elevate, and champion,” said Hello Sunshine CEO Sarah Harden. “We are extremely proud to extend our relationship with Otter Media, who has been a devoted partner since the beginning. We are truly honored to begin working alongside the team at Emerson Collective given their commitment to supporting impactful storytelling.”
Hello Sunshine is a producer on HBO’s “Big Little Lies,” Hulu’s “Little Fires Everywhere,” Amazon’s “Daisy Jones & the Six,” Apple’s “Are You Sleeping?,” and an untitled morning show project. Its unscripted “Shine on With Reese” launched in July, followed by “Master the Mess,” both on DirecTV. Feature projects include Sony’s “A White Lie,” Fox 2000’s “The League of Wives” and “Where the Crawdads Sing,” MGM’s “Legally Blonde 3,” and a Martina Navratilova documentary.
The company is partnered with Eve Rodsky, whose debut book, “Fair Play: The 5 New Rules to Revolutionize Your Marriage, Home and Sense of Purpose,” will be published in the fall.
Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, founded social change organization Emerson Collective in 2004. Emerson Collective became the majority owner of the Atlantic in 2017.
Otter Media, part of WarnerMedia, was formed in 2014 to acquire, invest in, and launch global over-the-top media services. In addition to Hello Sunshine, its portfolio includes Fullscreen, Rooster Teeth, Ellation, VRV, and Gunpowder & Sky.
Starz to Develop ‘Kin’ Series With Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine
Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine banner has inked a deal with Starz to develop “Kin,” Variety has learned.
The multi-generational family drama comes from “Queen Sugar” and “Constantine” writer Davita Scarlett, who developed the project with Chester Jones III. Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine film and TV head Lauren Neustadter are on board as executive producers alongside Scarlett.
“The opportunity to work in partnership with Davita Scarlett as well as Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine on this series is serendipitous,” Starz president of programming Carmi Zlotnik said in a statement. “Hello Sunshine puts women at the forefront of the stories they are telling, and that fits perfectly into Starz’s overall programming strategy to offer compelling content that appeals to female audiences.”
Witherspoon described Scarlett’s script as “utterly original, complex, and incredibly nuanced.”
“She deftly explores issues around identity and the secrets family members keep to protect themselves and one another. I’m so excited to team up with Starz to bring these strong, memorable female characters to life on screen,” Witherspoon said.
See Reese Witherspoon’s Empowering New Lipstick Collaboration with Elizabeth Arden
Reese Witherspoon and Elizabeth Arden are teaming up again to empower women through beauty.
One year after the brand and its Storyteller-in-Chief launched the March On campaign to provide support for women’s issues worldwide, and commemorated moment with a charitable red lipstick, they’re continuing the mission, this time with a vivid pink.
Witherspoon says the bold tone is her favorite. “It’s a strong color that inspires optimism, so it felt like the perfect color for our March On campaign,” she shares with PEOPLE.
Last year, Witherspoon and the brand kicked off the initiative at the UN on International Women’s Day, March 8, 2018. Along with the announcement, the brand pledged one million dollars, including 100 percent of lipstick proceeds, to UN Women, an organization that advocates for gender equality.
“I think the lipsticks we have created are a great way to extend the legacy of Elizabeth Arden, who cared so much about women’s rights and the freedom of women worldwide,” says Witherspoon of the ongoing campaign, adding that she is “enormously happy to be collaborating with a brand that I love, and that is dedicated to making women’s lives better.”
This year, the actress will be spending International Women’s Day on set, but will celebrate the day nevertheless.
“I love International Women’s Day because it’s a time to reflect and help women all over the world. I feel like I’ve had an extraordinary amount of privilege growing up in a country where I have a lot of rights, and I think it’s important to shed light on women who don’t have the same.”
Universal Joins Reese Witherspoon, J.J. Abrams, Jordan Peele in Committing to Hiring Female Directors
Universal Pictures’ Peter Cramer, Focus Features’ Peter Kujawski and DreamWorks Animation’s Margie Cohn have committed to hiring at least one female director in the next 18 months as part of the 4% Challenge.
The development was announced Tuesday and comes in the wake of Time’s Up and the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative launching the challenge on Jan. 25 at the Sundance Film Festival. The organization said on Monday that more than 50 high-profile Hollywood producers — including Reese Witherspoon, J.J. Abrams, and Jordan Peele — have committed to the 4% Challenge.
The initiative is part of the Timesupx2 campaign to double the number of women in leadership positions.
The name is derived from women having directed only 4% of the country’s top grossing movies over the past decade. Nina Jacobson, Paul Feig, Amy Schumer, Angela Robinson, and Franklin Leonard committed to the promise during a panel discussion on Friday, and Tessa Thompson inaugurated the challenge during a keynote address. Regina King was the first to pledge to taking the 4% Challenge during her acceptance speech at the Golden Globes, vowing to employ at least 50% women on everything she produces.
Lena Waithe, Rashida Jones, Olivia Wilde, Armie Hammer, Kumail Nanjiani, Josh Gad, Amy Pascal, Bryce Dallas Howard, Brie Larson, Eva Longoria, Rachel Brosnahan, Constance Wu, Janet Mock, Brad Simpson and Kerry Washington are among the notable producers on board.
The Sundance Film Festival recently reported that 31% of feature-length submissions this year had at least one woman director, as did 35% of episodic and shorts content. Of feature films and episodic content accepted in 2019, 41% had a woman director while 52% of shorts did.
Get in Bed with Reese Witherspoon! Draper James x Crate & Barrel Sheets and Pillows Are Here
Draper James is launching bedding!
On Tuesday, the brand, founded by Reese Witherspoon, announced the launch of a bedding collaboration with Crate & Barrel that features duvet covers, pillow shams and sheets. The Willow Collection is the latest in an ongoing collaboration that has so far included dining and entertaining essentials.
In true Witherspoon style, the line has plenty of Southern charm, with designs featuring a classic blue and white leaf pattern and trellis motifs.
Prices range from $50 (for a set of two standard pillowcases) to $210 (for a king-sized sheet set), with many variations in between. A printed lumbar pillow costs $90, while a solid euro sham rings in at $70.
The Willow printed duvet cover goes for $200 for a king-sized bed, and features interior corner ties and pearlized buttons for a ladylike touch.
Witherspoon’s new bedding line is an extension of Draper James’ collaboration with Crate & Barrel, and joins other products such as placemats, napkins and dinnerware sets, as well as sun hats and printed tote bags emblazoned with phrases like “Hello, Sugar.”
Reese graces the cover of the new February issue of US Vogue! The magazine features a story on her as the “moral compass of Hollywood” (which is a great title for her!), and features an extensive new interview and a new photoshoot – including a photo with Betty and Ava. It’s a fantastic article exploring how Reese’s career has developed, and focuses mostly on her recent move into production and business; there are also some great quotes from Cheryl Strayed, Nicole Kidman and Meryl Streep. I also liked reading about where her Oscar is, and that she has hardbound copies of scripts from her movies!
Read the full article below, and find high quality photos from the cover and the shoot in our Gallery. We’ll have scans for you soon. Make sure you pick up a copy when you can!
Reese Witherspoon: Activist, Advocate, Hollywood’s Moral Compass
The first time Reese Witherspoon found herself suspended from school was in third grade, when she was caught running a custom-barrette business from her desk. (She painted store-bought barrettes and sold them at a profit; when her paint pens leaked onto her desk, she was apprehended.) Another time was during her junior year, at a private girls’ high school in Nashville, when she complained to her English teacher that the work they were doing wasn’t challenging enough. Witherspoon was in many ways a model student—good grades, popular, a soccer player and cheerleader—but she also had a reputation for telling teachers what they were doing was wrong.
“I always tended to be outspoken with my opinions,” she says. “Whether they were appropriate or not.”
More than two decades later, Witherspoon is still fighting the status quo. Insofar as Hollywood is an extreme version of high school, a fishbowl of fragile egos, insecurity, and often-misdirected sexual energy, she has taken it upon herself to be a champion of the overlooked and the underestimated. She may still bear the imprint of the perky-blonde roles that kept her in American-sweetheart mode for the better part of two decades, but something’s changed beneath the surface. Witherspoon has become a formidable businesswoman, launching a company that has a hand in just about every imaginable sector of contemporary media, and she’s become a formidable activist as well, fighting for greater representation in Hollywood of people of color, LGBTQ people, people with disabilities, and—most of all—women.
“The idea is to put women at the center of the story,” Witherspoon says, sitting barefoot and in jeans in the kitchen of her sunny, sprawling Los Angeles home as her three dogs—a German shepherd named Nash (short for Nashville), a French bulldog named Pepper, and a lab named Hank—amble and snort among the rooms. “I was sick of making movies where I was the only female lead on the set. I was sick of seeing scripts where there was one female role, badly written, and yet every actress in town wanted the part because there was nothing else.”
There is perhaps no greater example in the history of television of putting women at the center than Big Little Lies, the HBO sensation that picked up eight Emmys in 2017. Witherspoon executive-produced the series with Nicole Kidman, with whom she also stars alongside Laura Dern, Zoë Kravitz, and Shailene Woodley. In the second season, which airs in late spring, Meryl Streep will bring the show’s number of female leads to six.
December 20, 2018 • Category: Hello Sunshine, Producing •
Comments Off on MGM Partners With Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine On ‘Eleanor Oliphant’; Liz Hannah Scripting
MGM Partners With Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine On ‘Eleanor Oliphant’; Liz Hannah Scripting
MGM has teamed with Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine on the film adaptation of the Gail Honeyman bestselling novel Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. Set to write the script is Liz Hannah, who wrote the Steven Spielberg-directed The Post. It is a potential star vehicle for Witherspoon. She is starring for MGM in Legally Blonde 3 and the studio has made it a priority to find more film vehicles for her to star in and produce.
Reese Witherspoon and Lauren Levy Neustadter will produce for Hello Sunshine.
Hello Sunshine optioned the book May, 2017. Eleanor Oliphant is the story of an out-of-the-ordinary heroine who goes from living a lonely life to realizing the only way to survive is to open your heart. The novel was published by the Penguin Random House imprint Pamela Dorman Books. Witherspoon optioned the Glasgow-based novelist’s book very early and it went on the sell over 1 million copies in the U.S. and Canada with a long run on the bestseller lists.
Eleanor Oliphant author Honeyman is repped by The Artists Partnership, Emily Hayward Whitlock and Madeleine Milburn Ltd.
Said Witherspoon: “Gail has created an incredibly smart, funny, and eccentric character who beautifully demonstrates the ways vulnerability and human connection can so deeply enrich your life. Eleanor’s journey is utterly extraordinary. To know her is to love her, and I’m so excited to team up with MGM and Liz Hannah to bring this unbelievably gorgeous character to life on-screen.”
Said MGM President of Motion Picture Group Jonathan Glickman: “For over 17 years, Reese has been an integral part of the fabric of MGM both in front and behind the camera, and we couldn’t be happier to continue this partnership with her Hello Sunshine team on this wonderful and beloved novel.”
Cassidy Lange will oversee on behalf of MGM.
Honeyman is repped by The Artists Partnership, Emily Hayward Whitlock and Madeleine Milburn; Hello Sunshine is represented by CAA and Hansen, Jacobson; Hannah is repped by UTA, Echo Lake Entertainment and Jackoway Tyerman.
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