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Russell Simmons signs new deal with HBO

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Russell Simmons and HBO have a long and prosperous history together. The hip-hop mogul is now adding a new chapter to his working relationship with the premium cable network. According to various sources, Simmons has signed a new two-year “first look” deal with HBO. The deal allows Simmons to develop new projects for the network and HBO gets the “first look” at show ideas.

If HBO decides to pass on a particular project, Simmons has the option of shopping it elsewhere.

Simmons famously executive produced the popular HBO stand-up comedy series “Russell Simmons’ Def Comedy Jam” in the early 1990s and its subsequent spin-off “Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry. On MTV, Simmons executive produced “Run’s House,” a reality series that focused on his younger brother, Joey “Rev. Run” Simmons of Run-D.M.C.; as well as “Daddy’s Girls,” a spin-off of Run’s show that featured his daughters, Vanessa and Angela Simmons.

Simmons was also executive producer for the 2006 film Waist Deep, which starred R&B singer-actor Tyrese, rapper Game and Meagan Good.