“Ballers” star John David Washington, Denzel Washington’s son, is in negotiations to topline the Focus film about the true story of an African-American police officer who infiltrated the KKK.
Lee will direct and produce with Peele. Sean McKittrick, Shaun Redick, and Raymond Mansfield of QC Entertainment, and Jason Blum of Blumhouse Productions are also on board to produce.
The movie follows Ron Stallworth, a detective in Colorado Springs, Colo., who in 1978 answered an ad in the local newspaper seeking new Klan members. He not only gained membership, but rose through the ranks to become the head of the local chapter. Stallworth, who is black, was able to gather all sorts of intelligence by pretending to be a white supremacist on the phone or via other forms of correspondence. He sent a white fellow officer in his place for any in-person meetings. During his undercover work, Stallworth managed to sabotage several cross-burnings and other activities of the notorious hate group.
Charlie Wachtel and David Rabinowitz will adapt the script with Lee and Kevin Willmott.
QC’s Edward H. Hamm Jr. will serve as executive producer. Focus president of production Josh McLaughlin will oversee the movie for the company.
Washington currently stars on the HBO series “Ballers.” He is repped by WME.