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Michelle and Barack Obama are Back on the Scene as TV/Film Producers for Neflix

Marion Charatan

Posted on May 24, 2018 19:41

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The former president and his wife will tackle the roles of producers for Netflix in their new production company, Higher Ground.

The Obamas are coming back—not to the White House but to Neflix in new roles. Whether or not you supported Barack Obama, it’s hard to dispute that he was an erudite and articulate public speaker.

The ex-President has charisma—a délicatesse that can’t be learned. You have it or you don’t. Michelle Obama has it, too. It’s an intangible quality that one could compare to the ‘it factor’ an actor has. That’s why I was not surprised to read in a recent LA Times article by Davd Ng that the Obamas are venturing into the Hollywood arena as a producers. The 44th president and his wife have signed a multiyear deal with Netflix that will allow the couple to act as producers for the giant streaming service.

The Obamas' production company is called Higher Ground Productions. (Remember the Stevie Wonder masterpiece hit Higher Ground?)

Back in 2009, Obama said, "I think it's fair to say that had I not been a Stevie Wonder fan, Michelle might not have dated me. We might not have married." Obama made those comments when he and his wife hosted a White House event where Wonder was honored with The Gershwin Award for Lifetime Achievement. "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours," was played at Obama’s campaign stops and the Obamas danced to Wonder’s love song You and I at their wedding.

Higher Ground will produce a diverse mix of content, according to Netflix, that will include some scripted series, unscripted series, docu-series, documentaries and features.

Obama said, "One of the simple joys of our time in public service was getting to meet so many fascinating people from all walks of life, and to help them share their experiences with a wider audience," and he went on to state, "That's why Michelle and I are so excited to partner with Netflix — we hope to cultivate and curate the talented, inspiring, creative voices who are able to promote greater empathy and understanding between peoples, and help them share their stories with the entire world."

Michelle Obama added, "Barack and I have always believed in the power of storytelling to inspire us, to make us think differently about the world around us, and to help us open our minds and hearts to others."

Obama is certainly not the first US president with Hollywood ties. Hollywood’s elite have a history of influencing national political campaigns. Netflix Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings donated money to Democratic candidates including the presidential campaigns of Obama and Hillary Clinton. He also publicly criticized Donald Trump in 2016 during the Republican candidate's bid for the presidency.

In spite of the doubters and naysayers, I believe that Barack and Michelle Obama’s intentions are pure and they have a desire to make a difference. Programming that promotes empathy in a world gone mad is content that I will embrace.  Time will tell.

 

Marion Charatan

Posted on May 24, 2018 19:41

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