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Apple Nears Series Order for David Oyelowo-Led Dramedy ‘Government Cheese’ (EXCLUSIVE)

David Oyelowo
Austin Hargrave / AUGUST

David Oyelowo is set to star in a dramedy series that is nearing a pickup order at Apple, Variety has learned exclusively.

The show is titled “Government Cheese” and is based on the short film of the same name made by Paul Hunter. Hunter serves as co-creator on the series version with Aeysha Carr (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “The Carmichael Show”).

“Government Cheese” follows Hampton Chambers (Oyelowo), a man recently released from prison who struggles to keep his criminal past at bay and win back his family, all while processing moments of divine intervention that seem to happen with increasing frequency.

Hunter and Oyelowo originally brought the short film to MACRO and Apple, which will serve as co-studios on the series. Hunter, Carr, and Oyelowo all serve as executive producers along with Charles D. King, Marta Fernandez, Jelani Johnson and Ahmadou Seck of MACRO Television Studios. Oyelowo executive produces under his Yoruba Saxon banner, while Hunter executive produces via Ventureland. Ali Brown of Ventureland co-executive produces.

This marks the second Apple series to which Oyelowo is attached. He is also set to appear in the streamer’s series adaptation of Hugh Howey’s post-apocalyptic “Wool” novels. It is also the latest leading TV role for Oyelowo, as he is attached to star in the Paramount+ Western series “1883: The Bass Reeves Story.”  The show is based on the real-life lawman and was announced as part of an overall deal Yoruba Saxon signed with Paramount back in September 2021. Oyelowo is otherwise known for his roles in films like “Selma,” “Don’t Let Go,” “Queen of Katwe,” and “A United Kingdom.” He made his feature directorial debut in 2020 with the film “The Water Man,” in which he also starred.

Oyelowo is repped by CAA, Hamilton Hodell and Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein & Lezcano.