BREAKING: Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil, who last teamed on the Screen Gems remake Sparkle with Whitney Houston, have made a deal with Paramount Pictures for a new project with the working title Abandonment Issues. Mara Brock Akil will write the script and Salim Akil, her husband, will direct and they will produce together. Salim made his feature directing debut with last year’s TriStar comedy Jumping The Broom, which opened tops at the box office and grossed over $40 million domestically.
The duo also created the TV series The Game, which originated on the CW, got cancelled and then picked up by BET. Last year’s season premiere scored 7.7 million viewers, making it the top-rated ad-supported sitcom in cable history. The Akils have followed by making a multiyear development deal with BET to create original scripted series for the network. Next up is Being Mary Jane, which will star Gabrielle Union and is being written and executive produced by Mara Brock Akil, with Salim Akil directing. They are repped by ICM Partners.