OZY Studios recently signed a talent deal with Grammy-winning singer, songwriter, businesswoman and producer Jody Watley.
Watley is currently working with OZY to develop the much-anticipated scripted biopic following her illustrious multifaceted career and astonishing life.
As one of the architects of 21st century pop, from her groundbreaking marriage of rap & R&B (1987’s “Friends,” a collaboration with hip-hop legends Eric B. & Rakim) to her vision-forward marriage of high fashion, street fashion and music in the ’80s (long before it became the norm), to her fusion of jazz and underground club culture with keen pop instincts, and the ease with which she crossed and still crosses genres, Jody Watley forged the template that is now everybody’s playbook.
As a solo artist, she has 6 Billboard Hot 100 Top Ten Singles, 13 Number 1 Dance Singles, 2 R&B Number 1’s, 15 Top 40 Singles. Gold and platinum albums, 2007 Billboard Dance Lifetime Achievement, 2017 recipient of the Black Music Honors Crossover Music Icon Award and nominations from the American Music Awards, MTV Awards, NAACP Awards and Soul Train Awards.
From her groundbreaking fashion layouts in Rolling Stone, Harper’s Bazaar, Saks Fifth Avenue Fall Catalog and other prominent publications, the legendary singer has remained grounded and in touch with her fans through concerts and on her social media platforms.
To date, the beloved superstar has continued to release music.
Jody, congratulations on your new talent deal with OZY Studios!
Thank you. I am thrilled to team up with The Emmy-winning production branch of Modern Media Company, OZY to share my life story.
Jody Watley holds many “first titles” over the course of her remarkable career. She was on the first celebrity ad campaign for GAP and LA Eyeworks.
Her Dance to Fitness video was the first number one fitness video by a woman of color and recording artist. The trail blazer was also the first woman of color to play “Rizzo” on Broadway in the hit musical, “Grease.”
She is also the first woman of color to appear on the cover of SPUR Japan, a Japanese fashion magazine for the launch of Spur.
In February, 2021, Watley was appointed as the first-ever membership ambassador for the National Museum of African American Music in Nashville, Tennessee.
How does it feel to sign the first celebrity talent deal with OZY?
It feels amazing! I am excited to partner with OZY and bring my story to life, in hopes of encouraging all who see it to never stop believing in themselves.
Have you started the search for scriptwriters?
We have begun the search for writers to help develop the project. So, get ready and stay tuned… more news is coming soon.
“When I heard Jody’s story — one of overcoming the odds, of the power of positivity of defying expectations — I knew it was one we had to share,” says Chris Rantamaki, executive director of OZY Studios. “Fans will be surprised that Jody has overcome so many formidable challenges in her life that she has never revealed publicly. She is now ready to break her silence and we are honored she trusts us to tell her story.”
OZY CEO Carlos Watson, who interviewed Watley on The Carlos Watson Show agrees. “The moment I met Jody, I knew there was something special about her.” He adds, “There’s so much about Jody that people don’t know. I want to share the incredible story of the woman behind the music.”
Her likelihood was previously represented in Netflix’s Selena: The Series as one of the singer’s prime influences.
OZY is a next-generation media and entertainment company that aims to help curious people see the world more broadly and more boldly by introducing them to the “New + Next,” narratives that defy convention, change perspectives and ignite ideas. Beginning as a digital magazine in 2013, OZY has evolved into a modern media company, featuring podcasts, events and original TV series with leading networks, including A+E, HISTORY, Lifetime, Amazon, Hulu, OWN, PBS and BBC. Led by Emmy Award-winning journalist Carlos Watson and co-founder Samir Rao, OZY is based in Mountain View, California, and backed by leading Silicon Valley investors such as Emerson Collective, Marc Lasry and Tom Franco.
ABOUT JODY WATLEY
Jody Watley, singer/songwriter/producer/businesswoman, is one of the architects of 21st century pop, From her groundbreaking marriage of rap & R&B (1987’s “Friends,” a collaboration with hip-hop legends Eric B. & Rakim) to her vision-forward marriage of high fashion, street fashion and music in the ’80s (long before it became the norm), to her fusion of jazz and underground club culture with keen pop instincts, and the ease with which she crossed and still crosses genres, Jody Watley forged the template that is now everybody’s playbook.
Featured Image by Jody Watley