KILM Los Angeles, CA / Southern California channel 64 welcomes Punch TV to its family with Cassandra Cooper joining the production team to make the channel marquee content. Punch TV airs in over 16 million homes; the network currently broadcasts in Columbus, OH, Pensacola & Jacksonville, FL, Houston & Beaumont, TX, and plans to expand across the country over the next few years. Punch TV will air on all cable providers, including AT&T, Comcast, Charter, DIRECTV, Dish Network and Frontier Communications.
Cassandra Cooper J.D, M.A- is the Founder & the former Chief Executive Officer of Matriarch Multimedia Group. Under the Matriarch Multimedia Group umbrella, Ms. Cooper made strategic alliances with Eric B TV, Levert Entertainment (Universal Music Group) Continuum Pictures, MCTV. Under the MCTV umbrella, she collectively produced and distributed 104 independent features two big-box retailers and multiple programs. MMGI is currently in development of The Lost Shepherd, the authorized Suge Knight Biopic.
In Cassandra’s previous careers, she has made impressive strides, marketing over sixty albums. This significant accomplishment awarded her 22 gold and platinum plaques for her role in the success of these artists, generating sales upwards of 70 Million units respectively. A variety of these projects have surpassed the Gold (500,000) and Platinum (1,000,000) sales levels and gained industry recognition through Grammy Awards, American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards to name a few.
Cassandra has made with many mainstream A-list artists, including Mariah Carey, Michael Jackson, MJJ Records, Luther Vandross, Anita Baker, and Metallica to name a few. In keeping with her musical roots, Cooper served as a Managing Editor for Performer Magazine, the largest Rock magazine in the New England Region. She also owned and operated popular area nightclub called The Basement in Brockton, Mass, which allowed her to utilize her contacts to get major label talent to the venue. She has been a paid guest speaker for the Hip-Hop Summit, at both MIT, and Harvard University, and a panelist on “How Can I Be Down,” in Miami Florida. She was also on the board of the International Music Expo, which traveled nationally and turned over several hundred unsigned artists an opportunity to showcase their talent for major label A&R personnel.
Cassandra Cooper previously Produced “A Taste of Hunney” for the Punch TV Network, which was one of their highest rated series to date. Currently, Cassandra is getting the “Hollywood, Punch Report” for the first run and syndication.
The Hype Magazine recently had the opportunity to speak with the very talented.Cassandra Cooper about her event involvement in the upcoming Suge Knight Bio-Pic. Also, she shares her thoughts on entrepreneurship and mentoring the next generation for success.
Can you discuss with us how the opportunity to join “Punch TV” came about?
I started at Punch TV primarily as a producer than as an investor. I recently was offered the opportunity to join the team and become a part of what the new Punch TV will look like going forward.
What are some of the content that we can expect from the brand heading into 2018?
We are focusing on being very current, and I am working on a show called “The Hollywood Press Report” it is a lifestyle show that takes you behind the scenes in Hollywood. It’s not just the celebrity element; there’s food, fashion and everything in between. So, when you tune it to our program, you will feel that you have had the Hollywood experience.
You are currently working on the “Suge Knight Bio Pic.” Can you tell us when it is slated to be released?
Well, Hollywood is a small town, and a couple of producers that I collaborated on a project a few years ago had trouble closing out the funding for the project and they reached out to me. They had a budget of 20 million dollars, but they did not have the availability to close out the financing at that particular time. So, I brought in investors for the other half of the budget. We are about to start the pre-production phase of this project right after the first of the year. I believe we will roll the cameras in March.
Will the Suge Knight film show more in-depth detail in comparison to “Straight Outta Compton” and “All Eyez on Me?”
It will be more intimate details of what happened during that timeframe because it is Suge Knight’s story and it is has been approved by Suge Knight. He worked very closely with our writer and producers. You have to remember everything that has been released in the last couple of years has been an unauthorized view of his character. No one up to this point has touched on some of the things he has done in regards to the music industry. Whatever you might think of him as a person you can not deny the success of Death Row Records and the artists that came from that label.
Will the Suge Knight film be released in theaters or will it on “Punch TV?”
The Suge Knight Story will be a theatrical release and might make an appearance on Punch TV during the third cycle once it is released theaters. I’m guessing this project will make its debut at some point during the fourth quarter of 2018.
You are also working on The Lost Shepherd. Can you give us some insight on this project as well?
The Lost Shepherd was the original title of the Suge Knight bio-pic, and it was decided to change it to be just “Suge.” We are considering, once the motion picture is finished, turning it into a series. As you know, 90 minutes is not enough time to tell Suge’s story. Unfortunately, with his ongoing legal battle, the story continues to write itself. There are a lot more things to say, and just one movie will not cover everything. Also, just as a side note we will be composing new music for the soundtrack to the film along with all your favorites from Death Row’s catalog.
During your career, you have worked with some of the best musical acts in the business from Michael Jackson to Metallica. What advice do you have for aspiring artist out there?
We are in a different time in the music business, and I am still active in the industry and still maintain a partnership with Universal. Present day, artists are not beholden to major labels like they used to be when I was working with the artists you mentioned. You can go right to social media and deliver your content to the masses. I think artists nowadays if they want to stand out they must define their brands and put themselves out there. The public is driving the music industry at this time in comparison to the labels telling the people this is what is hot right now.
Being that you are an entrepreneur what advice would you like to share with individuals looking to work for themselves?
Invest in yourself because I believe that 90 percent of the time we are doing something for someone else whether that is taking care of the family, going to work a job, punching a time clock. What is that one thing we do for ourselves? Because at the end of the day there is only you? What have you done today to help push your dream forward? I feel that we as entrepreneurs can flourish if we push ourselves to our full potential. Investing in yourself is a considerable risk, but the rewards can be endless. I think about my height in business, and I have had close to 300 people working for me at a time. It is exciting to know that because of my business all of these individuals can pay their mortgage, their car notes and earn a living.
What are your thoughts about mentorship and internships being that you are a business owner?
I am all for it “each one teach one,” and any one of us that are successful would be very dishonest if we did not give credit to someone that helped us along the way. So, I feel obligated to help someone that is young or older and motivated to provide them with an opportunity to do the same thing. It is essential especially in the African American community because we are not reaching back and helping the next generation. Also, we are not reaching out to other individuals that are looking to get back into the business positions that we are looking to fill. So, I would like to think of myself as someone that is looking to help push things forward.
Being that you are have contributed to 70 million units sold and have many gold and platinum plaques. What is some advice you would like to share about marketing your brand and executing your strategy?
I think the key to the success of any brand is connecting to your consumer. Who are your fans? If you have a personal connection with your fans, they will be lifelong supporters. I don’t know if this applies much to Millennials, but I see old school artists still go on tour and can make a living off of their classic singles and albums. Based off of fans reminiscing about those traditional songs that we grew up on, and we support them in the most meaningful way. That being when they have tour dates we show up and buy tickets. There are not many artists that this generation shows brand loyalty on a consist basis. The new music biz is all beats and features; I’m not sure about the longevity of any of it.But I’m pretty sure we won’t be listening to Bad and Bougee ten years from now. But The Fugees or Nas well that’s another story.
Are any other projects that you are involved in outside of the entertainment business?
I am a real estate investor; we buy houses, we build homes and purchase land for development. I like to diversify my dollars. I am involved in the marijuana industry regarding education, cultivation and I co-own a cannabis bakery. I hope to help more people of color have legitimate opportunities to earn a living in the “green” space because they are synonymous with cannabis culture and for many years they were unfairly incarcerated for buying and selling the products.