Shaq would exec produce, make guest appearances
Fresh off his third NBA championship, Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal now hopes to tackle the small screen.O’Neal, who has dabbled in the feature (“Kazaam”) and rap music worlds, has met with execs from the major nets to pitch a one-hour drama project that he would executive produce. Project, which comes from a story created by O’Neal, would follow the ongoing friendship between two basketball players. Shaq’s day job would prevent him from starring full time in a series, but the three-time NBA Finals MVP –who ranks No. 2 in the league for points per game (27.2) — would make occasional guest appearances as his schedule would permit. Judith McCreary — who served as a supervising producer on the Showtime drama “The Hoop Life,” which took place in the world of pro basketball — is also on board to write and executive produce the project. One exec present at the pitch was impressed with how well-thought out the presentation was. “It was a much more impressive pitch than your traditional pitch by a sports figure,” the exec said. Besides “Kazaam,” O’Neal starred in the feature “Steel.” He also appeared in the films “Blue Chips,” “The Wash,” “Freddy Got Fingered,” “Good Burger” and “He Got Game.” O’Neal has also released five albums, including “Shaq Diesel,” “Shaq Fu: Da Return,” “You Can’t Stop the Reign,” “Respect” and “The Best of Shaquille O’Neal.” McCreary’s other credits include supervising producer on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.” Insiders involved with the project expect to hear back from at least two webs later this week. O’Neal is repped by Endeavor, while McCreary is repped by Genesis.
Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more