Tennis champ Naomi Osaka is stepping in to show biz! The athlete is linking up with Lebron James and Maverick Carter's The SpringHill Company to launch her own media production imprint, Hana Kuma. The announcement of Hana Kuma comes a month after the four-time Grand Slam champion officially launched her management company, Evolve, alongside her longtime agent, Stuart Duguid. Osaka is making moves in the industry, so let's take a look at what's going down next...
For those that need a reminder, Naomi Osaka is a professional tennis athlete born in Japan and has been ranked as the number one player by the Women's Tennis Association. In addition, she is the first Asian player to hold the top-ranking singles and has a slew of accolades under her belt. Besides being a four-time Grand Slam singles champ, Osaka has seven titles on the WTA Tour, two of which were at the Premier Mandatory level. So for all you tennis folks, this one is for you. But besides all her unbelievable athletic accomplishments, Osaka and her agent are launching Hana Kuma, which means "flower bear" in Japanese.
Hana Kuma is set to "produce stories that are culturally specific but universal to all audiences; playful and bold in its approach to tackle important issues of society," the company explained. Hana Kuma will take on anime, documentaries, branded content, and scripted and unscripted television series under its banner. "There has been an explosion of creators of color finally being equipped with resources and a huge platform," said Osaka in a statement via The Hollywood Reporter. Already in production, the company is working alongside The New York Times to produce the op-doc, MINK!, which will detail the life of Patsy Mink, the first woman of color who was elected to Congress.
The 24-year-old tennis pro shared her enthusiasm for the upcoming projects saying, "I’m so excited for what we are building at Hana Kuma. We will bring stories to life with this goal in mind: to make unique perspectives feel universal and inspire people along the way." We can't wait to see Osaka shine, on and off the court. Be sure to catch MINK! when it drops!