Will Packer has become Hollywood’s go-to producer for high-quality—and box office-topping—films that reflect the black experience. Earlier this year for About Last Night, Michael Ealy cracked to a room full of reporters that whenever Will Packer calls, his response is an automatic yes, almost without hearing what the film is.
His rationale makes sense: Every film Ealy has worked on with the producer has been a box office success. Takers, the 2010 crime thriller that also starred Idris Elba, brought in more than $70 million. Two years ago, it was Think Like a Man that left industry insiders scratching their heads, trying to figure out how a feature film with a majority-Black ensemble cast managed to rake in some $96 million, which is particularly impressive considering it cost $12 million to make. And About Last Night didn’t fare too shabbily, either; it’s earned more than $48 million and cost about $12.5 million to make.