Spike Lee, Mike Tyson and ‘Entourage’ creator/showrunner Doug Ellin are developing a dramatic series for HBO, according to a number of media publications.
According to our good friend Cynthia Littleton, writing in Variety, "Project, dubbed ‘Da Brick,’ was penned by [John] Ridley, who will serve as showrunner. Lee is onboard to direct the pilot and exec produce, along with Ellin, the steward of HBO’s "Entourage," as well as Tyson and Ellin’s producing partner, Jim Lefkowitz. Tyson’s wife, Lakiha Tyson, will co-exec produce along with Azim Spicer." [Please note that Variety is behind a pay-wall and may charge you money to read this article.]
Over at Deadline.com, Nellie Andreeva writes of the project, "[It] is described as a contemporary exploration of what it means to be a young, black man in supposedly post-racial America and is loosely inspired by aspects of Mike Tyson’s youth. [It’s] set in current-day Newark, NJ, nicknamed ‘brick city.’ While the project is still in development, HBO has hired a casting director to explore casting choices for the lead, looking for young black actors who are also credible in the boxing ring."
Andreeva adds in her story, "Tyson appeared in a 2010 episode of Ellin’s HBO comedy series ‘Entourage,’ playing himself. The original germ of an idea for ‘Da Brick’ came out of a meeting the two had on the set of the veteran comedy, which was inspired by Mark Wahlberg’s early years in Hollywood. ‘That’s when Mike asked me, why don’t [we] do with my life what we did with Mark’s life,’ Ellin said. ‘The initial idea was ‘Entourage’ meets ‘The Wire,’ an edgy story about an up-and-coming boxer and his crew that is much more dramatic than ‘Entourage.’ "