Comedian Mo’Nique has been brought back into the fold of the entertainment industry via a deal to develop unscripted television projects.
“The Parkers” actress inked the deal with Endemol Shine North America — which will allow her and her husband Sidney Hicks’ production company, Hicks Media, to develop shows for other talent and for Mo’Nique to host and star in.
The deal also reunites the actress with Cris Abrego, president and CEO of Endemol Shine Holdings. Abrego is also the man responsible for choosing Mo’Nique to host VH1’s popular series “Charm School” in 2006 when reality television was the new and hottest content on television.
Abrego said the comedian left a lasting impression on him.
“I’ll never forget my first time working with her on ‘Charm School,’ where she made it very clear that there was a lack of diverse faces behind the camera and that things needed to change,” Abrego told Deadline. “That was 15 years ago, and Mo’Nique has been a champion of equality and representation in our industry every since.”
While the actress has not been seen attached to any major industry projects since claiming to be blackballed in Hollywood following her 2010 Oscar win, she remains a relevant fixture on social media, as evidenced by the buzz over her recent controversial take on women wearing bonnets in public.
“It is an honor for Hicks Media Inc. to be forming a partnership with such a creative force in the industry as Endemol Shine, and it is an exciting opportunity to have an ally with the fearlessness, integrity and vision of its CEO, Cris Abrego,” said Mo’Nique and Sidney in a statement.
Part of that relevancy is what Abrego appreciates about the actress
“Mo’Nique is an icon in every sense of the word, and I can’t think of anyone who is more relevant and whose authentic voice should be heard right now more than hers,” he added.
Endemol Shine North America is responsible for producing some of TV’s biggest reality shows, including TBS ’s “Wipeout,” Fox’s “Master Chef,” and ABC’s summertime juggernaut “Big Brother.” While details of what projects may be coming down the pipeline were not shared, Abrego believes the Hicks are already presenting thrilling “top names” for possible collaborations.