Titled “Boys,” the drama hails from super-producer Dick Wolf and his wife Noelle Wolf. Sherri Cooper Landsman and Jennifer Levin, co-creators of the CW’s “Beauty and the Beast,” will write the project.
“Boys” follows the formation of a hugely successful boy band and captures all the excitement, competition, and fun, but also provides an inside look into the pressure that follows.
“Dick Wolf is a legend and the opportunity to work with him and NBC to create a compelling drama series is awesome,” said Malik.
Noelle Wolf first brought the project to NBC with Unigram’s Amanda Ghost, Gregor Cameron, and First Access Entertainment’s Sarah Stennett. Stennett will serve as executive music producer and will manage all music rights created in the series, in partnership with NBCUniversal. The Wolfs will serve as executive producers along with Malik, Ghost, Cooper Landsman, Levin, and Peter Jankowski. Cameron will serve as co-executive producer.
“We were intrigued by the synergistic potential that Zayn brings to the project. ‘Boys’ will be a show that’s totally integrated on broadcast and digital platforms. Casting and original music will be major components, giving the show promotional potential on multiple levels,” said Noelle Wolf.
“It’s exciting to be diving into this project with such passionate and prolific producers,” commented Jennifer Salke, president of NBC Entertainment. “Zayn certainly brings an authentic point of view to this world where kids are catapulted into fame at a dizzying speed. On top of our excitement around the creative ideas being discussed, we have a lot of respect for the musical and digital ambitions behind the project.”
The project marks a foray into a new, lighter genre for Wolf who is at the helm of the ever-expanding “Chicago” franchise, now with four series on NBC’s slate, and the long-running procedural “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.” The Malik project marks Wolf’s sixth potential scripted series at the network.
Unigram, founded by Ghost, Cameron, and Len Blavatnik, is a film, television and multimedia production company that works on film, TV, and alternative media properties that feature music as a central character.
First Access Entertainment, a joint venture between Sarah Stennett and Access Industries, focuses on talent development, brand development, and representation, recording artists and songwriters, and rights exploitation across the music, entertainment, and fashion industries.
Malik rose to prominence on “The X Factor” in the U.K. when Simon Cowell formed the boy band One Direction, along with Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Liam Payne, and Louis Tomlinson. The English singer departed One Direction in March 2015 to focus on his solo career, and since released his chart-topper “Pillow Talk,” becoming the first British male artist to debut at no.1 in both the U.K. and the U.S. with his debut single and album.