Soror Brittinee Royes has been named to Business Insider’s list of 25 rising stars of the entertainment business. Writer Lucia Moses shares this inspiring profile of Royes.
Royes, 35, VP of unscripted lifestyle and docuseries at NBCUniversal Entertainment, develops and oversees productions for some of the division's most successful unscripted programming, whether it's making Oxygen a destination for true-crime buffs, training her eye on comedies like "Celebrity Prank Wars" (hosted by Kevin Hart and Nick Cannon for E!), or developing the three-part docuseries "House of Kardashian" for Peacock.
The through-line is Royes' keen sense for topical stories, which she hones by digesting an endless amount of news and culture and keeping an eye out for fresh subjects she can work with. "I try to be aware of what's going on all day — through CNN, TMZ, Baller Alert. Reading up on what's the hottest book, what series are coming out," she said. "And hoping producers continue to love us and come to us before going to Netflix or another competitor."
Two projects she's especially excited about are "House of Kardashian," a docuseries about the rise of the family to reality royalty (Royes also previously worked on E!'s "Keeping Up With the Kardashians"); and the four-part docuseries "Black Pop: The Celebration of Black Pop Culture" for E!. "Sometimes I develop something and hand it off," she said, adding that "Black Pop" is "really special for me because I had the opportunity to develop it and got to oversee it in series."
Growing up in LA, Royes was exposed to Hollywood early on and got bit by the entertainment bug when she appeared in a Nike commercial that was shot at her high school. After studying journalism in college, she landed a job at BET, where she was exposed to the unscripted world and all its variations and storytelling forms. Jobs at Lionsgate Entertainment and Oxygen Media followed.