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AMC Theaters Strikes Big-Screen Distribution Deal With Black-Culture Streamer Mansa

AMC Theatres and FAST service Mansa, which focuses on Black culture, have inked a distribution deal to have the streamer’s original features and series shown in theaters nationwide, according to a report.

The deal, the value of which was not specified, will kickoff later this year with specific titles and release dates are announced, Deadline reported Thursday.

Mansa, founded by actors David Oyelowo, Nate Parker and Chiké Okonkwo and tech entrepreneur and film backer Zak Tanjeloff, airs a wide range of film and series drawn from global Black culture on its multiple FAST channels.

“A fundamental aspect of our business is to lift up underrepresented voices that have long been left out of traditional entertainment circles and distribution models,” Mansa Chief Commercial Officer Chris Yates said in a statement provided to Deadline. “With this partnership in place, we will be able to begin to shift the status quo and give our filmmaker partners the distribution, exposure and recognition they deserve.”

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The two companies did not immediately respond to requests for more comment and further details on the deal.

In April, Mansa announced an $8 million seed funding round with backing led by MaC Venture Capital, and additional funding from Jeffrey Katezenberg’s WndrCo, Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Investment Partners, Base Ventures, Dubin & Co, Rainmaker Films and Robert F. Smith.

The deal reflects the fact that while theaters have gained audiences but are still in build-back mode after reeling during the pandemic, want more content to draw people into seats. AMC is the nation’s largest chain with more than 7,700 screens.

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“Hollywood Studios again seems to recognize the incredible value creation of theatrical exhibition,” AMC Entertainment Holdings said CEO Adam Aro earlier this month during the company’s first quarter conference call. “In recent years, some studios were prioritizing their streaming services over theaters. Today, the talk in Hollywood is flipped. Moviemakers know there is money to be made in theaters, and studio after studio is rushing to increase the number of movies that they release first theatrically.”