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John C. Reilly Joins HBO’s 1980s Lakers Pilot, Replacing Michael Shannon

John C. Reilly has joined the HBO pilot about the 1980s Showtime Lakers in a recasting.

Reilly will play the role of former Lakers owner Jerry Buss, replacing Michael Shannon, who exited the project over creative differences. The character is described as a self-made millionaire whose success has only amplified his proclivity for risk, Buss redefines American sports, celebrity, and wealth by transforming the Lakers into a dynasty. But his house of cards threatens to collapse on him and the people he loves most.

Should the project go to series, it would mark one of few TV projects Reilly has starred in throughout his career. He was nominated for the Oscar and Golden Globe for best supporting actor for his work in the 2002 film “Chicago.” He is also known for his roles in big screen comedies like “Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story,” “Step Brothers,” “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby,” and the “Wreck-It Ralph” films.

He is repped by WME, Framework Entertainment, and Gendler & Kelly.

Jason Clarke is the only other currently announced cast member for the untitled pilot, playing the role of Jerry West.

Max Borenstein is writing and executive producing the pilot, which is set to begin production in September. Adam McKay will direct the pilot and executive produce through his yet to be named new production company. Kevin Messick of McKay’s company will also executive produce along with Jason Shuman. Jim Hecht co-wrote the story and will also executive produce. Scott Stephens will also executive produce with Rodney Barnes co-executive producing.

The pilot is based on Jeff Pearlman’s non-fiction book “Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s.”

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