HBO will soon produce the long rumored pilot called Da Brick, a drama about a young boxer growing up in Newark, New Jersey (a.k.a. “Brick City”). The show will be loosley based on the life of former boxing heavyweight champion, Mike Tyson. The pilot is to be co-produced by Tyson himself and Entourage’s Doug Ellin. John Ridley is writing the screenplay, while Spike Lee is on board to direct.
Tyson made a guest appearance on Entourage in 2010, a series loosely based on the Hollywood lifestyle of show producer Mark Wahlberg. “That’s when Mike asked me, why don’t we do with his 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.” No word yet on when the pilot is to air.
In addition to Da Brick, Ellin also wrote and will direct the ensemble series pilot, 40 ( a comedy about people in their 40’s) which is now casting. Ed Burns and Michael Rapaport have already been tapped as two of the four leads.
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UPDATE: The show seems to have already chosen their stars so this pilot may be closer to completion than we made it seem!
Milauna Jemai (NCIS) will play Lynette, Donnie’s mother, with him he reconnects with following a 14-month separation.
Julito McCullum (The Wire) will play Kevin, Donnie’s best friend and the one person he can’t leave behind, no matter how much he may want to.
Kamahl Naiqui Palmer (Gossip Girl) is set as Malik, the moral center of Donnie’s tight group of friends who is looking for direction between his middle-class upbringing and the harder realities of his environment.