TBS Orders 10 Episodes of ARE WE THERE YET?, New Sitcom from Joe Roth, Ice Cube and Distributed by Debmar-Mercury
Terry Crews (Everybody Hates Chris) to Star and Ice Cube to Have Recurring Role in Series Based on the Hit Revolution Studios Movie
Sitcom Marks Latest TBS Venture from Debmar-Mercury, Company Behind Tyler Perry's House of Payne and Meet the Browns
Joe Roth and Cube Vision's Ice Cube and Matt Alvarez to Executive Produce with Emmy�-Winning Show Runner Ali LeRoi
TBS, using the unique model created by Debmar-Mercury with Tyler Perry's House of Payne and Meet the Browns, is teaming with Joe Roth and Ice Cube for ARE WE THERE YET?, a sitcom starring Terry Crews (Everybody Hates Chris) and based on the hit Revolution Studios film of the same name. TBS has ordered 10 episodes of the new sitcom, slated to premiere in June 2010, with the option for an additional 90 episodes. The series is produced by Cube Vision and distributed by Debmar-Mercury. Revolution's Joe Roth and Cube Vision's Ice Cube and Matt Alvarez serve as executive producers, along with award-winning show-runner Ali LeRoi, who has won an Emmy� for his work on The Chris Rock Show and an NAACP Image Award for Everybody Hates Chris. In addition to executive-producing, Ice Cube will have a recurring role.
"We are confident that ARE WE THERE YET? will fit extremely well within TBS's popular and diverse comedy lineup," said Michael Wright, executive vice president, head of programming for TBS, TNT and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). "It's great to be working with Debmar-Mercury again after enjoying such enormous success with Tyler Perry's House of Payne and Meet the Browns. We also look forward to forging a new relationship with Revolution Studios and Cube Vision."
The movie Are We There Yet?, a breakout 2005 hit, told the story of Nick (Ice Cube), a smooth operator who is trying to land a date with Suzanne, a divorcee stuck working out of town over New Year's and miserable because she misses her kids. Nick gallantly offers to make her New Year's wish come true � and his own in the process � by driving her two children to be reunited with their mom. What Nick doesn't know is that Suzanne's children, whom he's never met, hate every man their mom dates on sight. The movie grossed more than $82 million at the box office and was followed in 2007 by a sequel, Are We Done Yet?
In the sitcom ARE WE THERE YET?, Crews will star as Nick, the character Ice Cube played in the film.
"Are We There Yet? was a hit family movie that transitions seamlessly into a television show," Roth said. "There is nothing quite like it currently on television. Teaming Cube Vision with Ali LeRoi to create this show with the astoundingly funny Terry Crews is a perfect way to continue the Are We There Yet? franchise."
Ice Cube said, "People of all ages loved the movies, so I am very excited to work on the series. Terry Crews is the perfect person to replace me as Nick. His physical comedy is undeniable. And Joe Roth is a master at putting the right team together. Cube Vision and Ali Leroi is a match made in heaven. No one runs a show like Ali. We are dedicated to creating the new template for family comedy."
Debmar-Mercury's association with TBS began in 2006, when the company devised a groundbreaking distribution strategy for Tyler Perry's House of Payne. Debmar-Mercury offered a 10-episode experiment in select markets that produced strong ratings, leading TBS to order a full-fledged series with an unprecedented 100 episodes. In January 2009, TBS premiered 10 episodes of Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns to strong ratings, leading the network to order additional episodes for a total of 80. So far this year, the two series have ranked as the top television programs in delivery of African-American viewers.
"When we set out to expand on the television comedy model that the amazing Tyler Perry has turned into a runaway success at TBS, we knew we had to be in business with Ice Cube, a cultural icon who can do it all: an acclaimed hip-hop artist, film phenomenon, actor, writer, director and producer," Marcus said.
Bernstein added, "To be back with TBS again and have a dream team of creative partners like Ice Cube, Joe Roth, Matt Alvarez and Ali LeRoi attached to this project, plus a breakout star in Terry Crews, this show has all the elements to be a major hit."
Debmar-Mercury, a worldwide media company specializing in syndication, network, cable and ancillary markets, produces and distributes The Wendy Williams Show, debuting in July 2009; distributes Tyler Perry's House of Payne and spinoff Meet the Browns; distributes a new, untitled comedy debuting in 2010 from Gary Sanchez Productions' Will Ferrell, Adam McKay and Chris Henchy; produces and distributes Trivial Pursuit: America Plays, in association with Hasbro, Inc.; distributes strips Family Feud, South Park and True Hollywood Story, as well as weeklies American Chopper, Deadliest Catch and The Dead Zone; and a movie library featuring titles from Revolution Studios and Lionsgate. In September 2007, Debmar-Mercury established a London-based international television distribution unit focused on acquiring international formats for U.S. and worldwide distribution, as well as licensing U.S. television formats to the global market. Debmar-Mercury is a wholly owned subsidiary of Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a leading next-generation studio.
Revolution Studios is the licensor and a distributor of the new series. Revolution Studios was founded in 2000 by Joe Roth, in partnership with Sony Pictures, Starz Encore Group and Fox Entertainment Group. Since its inception, Revolution Studios has created a library of 46 films, including Black Hawk Down, Maid in Manhattan, Anger Management and the Are We There Yet? franchise, collectively earning more than $3.7 billion at the box office. Currently, Revolution Studios is engaged in actively managing its library and pursuing licensing opportunities, including sequels, spin-offs and other productions based on its films. Prior to forming Revolution Studios, Joe Roth served as chairman of both the Walt Disney Studios and Twentieth Century Fox. In addition to being the majority owner of the Seattle Sounders FC, a major league soccer team, he is currently producing Alice in Wonderland for Disney with director Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp.
Cube Vision is a film and television production company that was started in 1998 by Ice Cube and Matt Alvarez. They have produced the successful Friday, Barbershop and Are We There Yet? franchises, as well as movies such as The Longshots and the upcoming The Janky Promoters. Additionally, they have produced the critically acclaimed television series Black/White. Other series include Barbershop: The Series and Friday: The Animated Series.
TBS, a division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., is television's top-rated comedy network. It serves as home to such original comedy series as My Boys, The Bill Engvall Show, Tyler Perry's House of Payne and Meet the Browns, as well as the upcoming Neighbors from Hell; late-night series like the upcoming Lopez Tonight, starring George Lopez, and The Very Funny Show, hosted by Tim Meadows; hot contemporary comedies like The Office, My Name is Earl, Family Guy and Seinfeld; specials like Funniest Commercials of the Year; special events, including star-studded comedy festivals in Chicago and Las Vegas; blockbuster movies; and hosted movie showcases.
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company, creates and programs branded news, entertainment, animation and young adult media environments on television and other platforms for consumers around the world.