Report: Adrien Brody Will Play Pat Riley In HBO’s Showtime Lakers Series

Two years ago, it was announced that HBO had picked up a scripted drama series, written by Adam McKay and based on Jeff Pearlman’s Showtime book, about the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s. Not much has been reported about the series since, with 2020 putting the TV production business in a holding pattern and numerous projects were shelved or pushed back.

However, it appears the series is still in the works, and we learned one major name that is now attached to star in it, as Variety brought word that Adrien Brody has signed on to portray a young Pat Riley for the series. It is, if nothing else, a pretty close casting choice in terms of look, and we’ll find out exactly how well Brody can channel Riley’s swagger and fire on the small screen.

Making a scripted drama about a basketball team brings plenty of challenges, but chief among them is finding actors who can believably portray players who tower over normal-sized humans — this isn’t a unique issue to basketball, as sometimes you get a very lean Cuba Gooding Jr. playing O.J. Simpson. In any case, Brody is now attached as Riley and with it on HBO, it stands to reason that they can really explore the full Showtime experience off the court, as the Lakers were the biggest stars in L.A. and enjoyed their status as such.

Variety also says John C. Reilly is on board to star as owner Jerry Buss, with a full list of casting choices that have been made:

Along with Brody, the show stars: John C. Reilly as Jerry Buss, Jason Clarke as Jerry West, Quincy Isaiah as Magic Johnson, Solomon Hughes as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Gaby Hoffmann as Claire Rothman, Hadley Robinson as Jeanie Buss, DeVaughn Nixon as Norm Nixon, Molly Gordon as Linda Zafrani, Rob Morgan as Earvin Johnson Sr., Spencer Garrett as Chick Hearn, Kirk Bovill as Donald Sterling, Delante Desouza as Michael Cooper, Stephen Adly Guirgis as Frank Mariani, Tamera Tomakili as Earletha ‘Cookie’ Kelly, and Joey Brooks as Lon Rosen.

The show is currently tabbed to release some time in 2022 and it will have some star power with Brody and Reilly.