Ep 28: A Conversation on Music, Film and Filling the Gaps - How Entertainment Executive Lisa Ellis Pivoted from Breaking Top Selling Artists to Producing Groundbreaking Films on Black History
This week’s episode features Lisa Ellis, Entertainment Executive and Founder of Provenance Ventures, an integrated multimedia production and entertainment company that creates, develops, and produces content that champions untold stories from underrepresented voices. A University of Maryland and Harvard Business School Graduate, Lisa has formerly held titles that include President and General Group Manager of Sony Urban Music, Executive Vice President of Sony Music Label Group and most recently, Global Head of Music at SoundCloud. She has worked with some of the biggest names in music including, John Legend, Maxwell, Nas, The Fugees, Mariah Carey, Destiney’s Child and the list goes on. Lisa was also ranked #3 in Billboard magazine’s “Most Influential Women in Music 2006, 2007, and 2009, as well as ranked #50 in Fast Company Magazine’s “100 Most Creative People in Business” in 2011 and 2012. With more than 25 years in the music industry under her belt, she made the decision to pivot into film, founding Provenance Ventures, combining her business acumen, previous experience working on soundtracks for box office breaking films, and innate passion for amplifying the untold stories of the Black community and our history. Listen as we discuss the challenges Lisa faced early in her career as a Black woman promoting pop and rock music and later overseeing the urban music genre, how she preserved and landed countless chart topping, grammy nominated artists and what drove her pivot from music to film. She also gives us a deep dive into two incredible film projects that she is executive producing, the first Never Caught, which will be the film adaptation of the 2017 book, "Never Caught: The Washingtons Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge" by Erica Armstrong Dunbar, and an upcoming HBO Limited Series titled, "Say Their Names," which will examine the Grim Sleeper murders, occurring over a 30-year period in which Black girls and women were killed in a wave of unsolved murders in South Los Angeles.