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NBA All-Star Dwyane Wade hopes his life story is a slam-dunk with Fox.
The Miami Heat guard is adapting his New York Times best-selling book A Father First: How My Life Became Bigger Than Basketball, setting up the half-hour comedy at Fox with a script commitment.
The Sony Pictures Television entry — titled Three the Hard Way — is inspired by the life of the three-time NBA champion and gold medalist and centers on superstar Daryl Wade and his entourage of eccentric friends who find themselves parenting by committee after he gets full custody of his two young sons. It’s a recipe made for disaster but no matter how misinformed, misguided or unfit Team Wade may be, they have a trump card that can’t be cut lose: love.
Burn Notice‘s Ben Watkins will pen the script and executive produce alongside Wade and his newly launched ZZ Productions banner, Mandalay Sports Media’s Mike Tollin (Coach Carter, Arli$$), Perfect Storm Entertainment’s Justin Lin, head of TV Danielle Woodrow and CEO Troy Craig Poon.
The comedy has been in development since late 2012 and sold to Fox earlier this year. Basketball fan Lin, who has a son, and Perfect Storm were drawn to the project in June. Tollin then went to Watkins, with whom he has a long relationship, to board the project as a writer and EP. Three the Hard Way marks a return to comedy for Watkins — who has four sons of his own — after he started his career on cult favorite short film Quest to Ref. The comedy marks Watkins’ first project since USA Network’s Burn Notice wrapped its seventh and final season in September.
Since launching its television arm in April, Perfect Storm has set up multiple projects this development season, including Fox’s Shawn Ryan entry Aloha; CBS’ untitled Alex Kurtzman/Roberto Orci drama; and a TV series based on material written by Enter the Dragon actor Bruce Lee. Three the Hard Way marks its first comedy under its pact with Sony Pictures Television.
Watkins is repped by CAA and Hirsch Wallerstein; Wade is with CAA and Meister Selig; Tollin is with CAA and Morris Yorn; Perfect Storm is with CAA, Jackie Eckhouse and John Sloss.
Wade’s comedy comes as semi-autobiographical projects continue to be hot this development season. Three the Hard Way joins entries from Adam Levine, Jay Baruchel and Andrea Abbate, among others in the works this year. For its part, ABC’s semi-autobiographical comedy The Goldbergs — which has been picked up for a full season — is based on the life of showrunner Adam F. Goldberg.
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Thomas Brodie Sangster