Obama production company hires MTV, ESPN and FX Networks veterans for Netflix projects


More details are emerging about a production partnership between Netflix and Barack and Michelle Obama.

The company, called Higher Ground Productions, is already staffed by veterans of MTV, ESPN and FX Networks and will produce projects that empower “new and diverse voices.” The Obamas announced last year they signed a multiyear deal with Netflix for scripted and unscripted films and series.

Priya Swaminathan and Tonia Davis will serve as co-heads of the company, joined by creative executive Qadriyyah “Q” Shamsid-Deen.

“They’re masterful storytellers. They’re veterans in the industry. And they not only bring their unique perspectives and life experiences to every project, but they’re committed to finding new voices who have their own stories to tell,” President Barack Obama said in a statement. “Michelle and I couldn’t be more excited about the team we’re assembling.”

“Our goal isn’t just to make people think—we want to make people feel and reach outside of their comfort zone,” Michelle Obama said in the statement. “With their thoughtfulness, creativity and empathy, we know that Priya, Tonia and Q will find the common thread within every story to inspire us to be something more. I’m thrilled about this team as professionals—and as people. They’re wonderful.”

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