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John Legend’s Get Lifted Film Co. Adds ‘American Crime’ EP & Former BET Exec To Run Scripted & Unscripted Units

Dominic Patten

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EXCLUSIVE: Sherman’s Showcase has just wrapped up on IFC and Get Lifted Film Co. has hip-hop competition series Rhythm + Flow coming to Netflix next month, but right now the company is dropping some big hires.

Michael McDonald has joined the John Legend, Mike Jackson, and Ty Stiklorius-led company as their Head of Scripted Television and Austyn Biggers is on board as Head of Unscripted Television. Having worked with the former ABC Studios’ drama SVP at McDonald’s Stearns Castles shingle, Thomas Benjamin is also coming to Get Lifted as a creative executive.

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“We’re thrilled to have Austyn, Michael, and Tommy join the Get Lifted family,” said co-founder Jackson today to Deadline of the Oscar winning company. “They bring a wealth of experience and relationships that takes years to cultivate and we look forward to working with them to help take Get Lifted to the next level.”

Ex-American Crime EP and never a member of the Doobie Brothers, McDonald has just closed his Get Lifted deal, I hear Former BET executive and Very Cavallari consulting producer Biggers inked his agreement a couple of months back.

“It’s an honor to be part of such an incredible team led by John, Mike and Ty that brings compelling underrepresented voices and stories to Television,” said McDonald in a statement Friday. “Get Lifted is determined to make shows that entertain while making a difference.”

“I am thrilled to be joining Get Lifted, a company that values sincere storytelling in every project they tackle,” stated Biggers today. “Mike, John, and Ty are dedicated to making premium programs that speak to a large, global audience while also creating change and impacting conversations off-screen.”

The duo plus Benjamin will report to managing partner Jackson, Get Lifted says.

Having inked an overall deal with McDonald’s old home of ABC Studios this spring, Voice coach and EGOT winner Legend’s crew have been busy of late with the mock-variety series on IFC and Netflix’s October 9 debuting first musical competition show with the Cardi B, Chance the Rapper, and T.I.-judged Rhythm + Flow. In addition, the La La Land producing Get Lifted have the feature All Rise, the David E. Talbert helmed Netflix holiday flick Jingle Jangle, which Deadline exclusively revealed last year, and an as yet untitled Amazon dramedy series based on Sandra Bullock’s college life.

Get Lifted is repped by WME and Nina Shaw of Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finklestein and Lezcano.

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