Adam McKay’s 1980s LA Lakers Series for HBO Finally Gets a Title

It’s not “Showtime”

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Adam McKay’s upcoming series for HBO about the 1980s-era Los Angeles Lakers finally has a title. The heavily anticipated drama will be called “Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty.”

It will premiere in March.

The series was initially going to be called “Showtime,” which is a reference to that particular Lakers era that saw the franchise win five championships with a fast-paced style of play. But that doesn’t work in the TV world, with HBO’s rival pay-TV channel also being named Showtime.

Based on the Jeff Pearlman book “Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s,” the show will dramatize the professional and personal lives of the team, described in the series logline as “one of sports’ most revered and dominant dynasties — a team that defined its era, both on and off the court.”

McKay is director and executive producer on the series, which is written by Max Borenstein. Jim Hecht, Jason Shuman and Kevin Messick of McKay’s production company also executive produce alongside Scott Stephens and co-EP Rodney Barnes.

Jason Clarke stars as Jerry West, the “cantankerous tortured genius of basketball” and former longtime Lakers general manager. John C. Reilly will play former Lakers owner Jerry Buss, with Quincy Isaiah and Solomon Hughes as former Lakers legends Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, respectively.

Additional cast members include Michael Chiklis as Red Auerbach, Sean Patrick Small as Larry Bird, Sally Field as Jessie Buss, Hadley Robinson as Jeanie Buss, Spencer Garrett as legendary Lakers broadcaster Chick Hearn, Delante Desouza as Michael Cooper, Olli Haaskivi will play Nike co-founder Phil Knight and Kirk Bovill as former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling.