After being told to “shut up and dribble” by Fox News host Laura Ingraham earlier this year, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James has done anything but that, but he will satirize that stupid sentiment with a new docuseries he’s producing for Showtime of the same name.
“Shut Up and Dribble” will focus “on the changing role of athletes in the current political environment that boasts LeBron James among its executive producers,” according to Joe Otterson of Variety, who reported the announcement after Showtime president and CEO David Nevins revealed the series as part of the TCA summer press tour.
“If being a star athlete is inherently a political experience, ‘Shut Up and Dribble’ tells that complex and dramatic story from the past to the present and from the inside out,” said Nevins. “LeBron James is one of many competitors whose place in the spotlight has led not to silence but perspective, and he, Maverick Carter and Gotham Chopra have given us an important, insightful docuseries that should bring their fans and fellow citizens to a higher level of discourse, rather than the dismissal satirized in the title.”
James has been an outspoken critic on social issues for some time, but especially of late with his criticism of Donald Trump for trying to use sports to “divide” the country along racial lines, outspokenness that led Trump to imply James was stupid in a tweet.
Unsurprisingly, that’s only prompting James to speak out further, and according to Otterson, “James will executive produce along with Springhill’s Maverick Carter and Rich Paul, Martin Desmond Roe, Chris Uetwiller, Datari Turner, and Gotham Chopra, who will also direct.”
Lakers fans may remember Chopra from the film “Kobe Bryant’s Muse,” which he also directed.
This series is just the latest television project James will be involved in upon his move to Los Angeles, with his barbershop-set talk show “The Shop” — which he’ll also produce — getting picked up by HBO last week. And given that James will now be able to hobnob with entertainment sources on a regular basis in Los Angeles, it’s probably not the last such project he’ll be involved in.
You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.