(Culver City, July 31, 2012) – DeVon Franklin has been named Senior Vice President of Production for Columbia Pictures it was announced today by Doug Belgrad, President of Columbia Pictures, to whom Franklin will report.

In his new role, Franklin will find, develop and supervise production of commercial material geared towards the urban and faith-based markets. He will work with all of the film divisions within the Sony Pictures umbrella. His next project will be the film adaptation of the New York Times Bestseller, Heaven Is For Real.

The promotion recognizes the executive’s success supervising such hit films as The Karate Kid, Jumping the Broom, and the highly anticipated film Sparkle, starring Whitney Houston and Jordin Sparks.

Franklin will continue to work on Columbia Pictures franchise titles such as The Karate Kid, Masters of the Universe and After Earth.

“DeVon has been a huge contributor to our development and production team since joining the studio in 2005,” Belgrad said. “We are proud to recognize his achievements with this promotion. DeVon is positioned to capitalize on his unique skill set, experience and relationships and will further define Sony as an industry leader in telling stories for a diverse audience. His focus will complement the outstanding work being done by the Screen Gems and Affirm Films divisions.”

Since joining Sony Pictures, Franklin has helped to oversee such hits as The Pursuit of Happyness, Hancock, and Seven Pounds, all of which starred Will Smith and saw enormous worldwide success as well as the hit film 21, starring Kevin Spacey.

An ordained preacher and published author who last year wrote “Produced By Faith,” an inspirational and motivational self-help book chronicling his outlook on life and reflecting upon his experiences in the entertainment industry, Franklin joined the studio in 2005 from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures, where he served as an executive, shepherding such projects as Be Cool and Beauty Shop.

He began his career as an intern for Will Smith and James Lassiter at Overbrook Entertainment.

Franklin earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a minor in Cinema-Television from the University of Southern California.

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