VIEW FROM THE TOP: THE FUTURE OF THE VIDEOS/TV/MOVIES BUSINESS
February 06, 2020
4:30 PM - 5:00 PM
President, Codeblack Films, Laugh Out Loud, and HartBeat Digital
Jeff Clanagan is an award-winning producer and innovator in entertainment. He currently holds roles as President and Founder of Codeblack Films and Codeblack Digital, a film production and distribution company dedicated to super-serving the black community worldwide, and Laugh Out Loud, the entertainment company from the world’s top comedian Kevin Hart.
A longtime business partner of Hart, Clanagan also serves as President of Hart’s media and technology company HartBeat Digital, which focuses on producing film, TV, digital content and mobile gaming apps for distribution across all digital platforms and emerging technologies.
Their newest venture, Laugh Out Loud, is a comedy brand and multi-platform network delivering the future of comedy: social, mobile, multicultural and seriously funny. From stand-up legends to globally-recognized digital influencers, Clanagan works with Hart and the LOL team to curate and cultivate the next generation of multicultural comedic storytellers. Clanagan oversees the strategic vision and expansion of the brand, which includes the streaming service, multi-platform distribution deals with digital partners like YouTube (Kevin Hart: What The Fit?), Facebook, and more.
In his role with Codeblack Films, Clanagan and his team have acquired and developed films for distribution such as the Golden Globe® nominated indie drama Frankie and Alice and Addicted, based on the popular urban novel by Zane, which grossed over $16 million at the box office.
Most recently, Clanagan broke new ground in theatrical marketing with his digital-first approach to the successful release of films like The Perfect Match and the Tupac Shakur biopic All Eyez On Me, which generated $27 million in its first week. By piloting new digital-first tracking and research initiatives with a first-of-its-kind partnership with Screen Engine, he’s leveraging the millions of followers he built through Codeblack Digital, a division of Codeblack Films, to facilitate scalable research on influential African American audiences.
In 2013, Clanagan partnered with Hart to produce and release his concert movie, Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain, which went on to gross $32 million at the box office. He also produced Hart’s comedy concert Kevin Hart: What Now? The historic special was filmed live in front 53,000 people, marking an unprecedented moment in comedy when Hart became the first ever comedian to headline an NFL stadium. Clanagan was also the producer of Hart’s stand-up comedy tour, What Now? which is the best-selling comedy tour of all time, grossing over $100 million with 1.3 million tickets sold.
Clanagan began his career as a concert promoter for the “HBO Def Comedy Jam” tour and NWA’s “Straight Outta Compton” tour, on which the 2015 hit movie that grossed more than $200 million was based. He also promoted tours for hip hop royalty including Mary J Blige, Will Smith and Jazzy Jeff, among others. His strong reputation allowed him to secure lucrative corporate sponsorships from companies such as Citibank, Budweiser, Sprite and Snapple.
In 1998, Clanagan moved into the film and television industry when he was named the President of No Limit Films, rapper Master P’s company. During his tenure, Clanagan cultivated the startup into a $40 million juggernaut multimedia company, producing a slate of profitable straight-to-video features. No Limit Films is recognized as the pioneer of the urban home video sell-thru market.
Clanagan was a driving force behind the birth of the home entertainment business, with his proven success in the strategic marketing and distribution of home entertainment properties such as: The Def Comedy Jam series, BET’s Arabesque Films, and The Fat Albert TV series. Clanagan has released over 300 movie titles, which have grossed over $350 million dollars in revenue.
Clanagan has a passion for mentoring young people. In 2015, he created a sports division within his company called Codeblack Elite Track Club, which allows him to coach and mentor young adults in track and field at Calabasas High School.
Clanagan graduated from the University of Washington before attending Harvard Business School in its prestigious executive program. Clanagan was awarded the Pioneer Award from the African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) in 2014 and the Game Changer Achievement Award from Uptown Magazine and Kia Motors. Clanagan has also been named in the Ebony Power 150 and Black Enterprise top 50 Power Brokers and he has been profiled in The New York Times, The L.A. Times, and GQ Magazine.
Clanagan currently lives in the Los Angeles area with his family.