Showtime has ordered a three-part documentary series from LeBron James about athlete activism, with a title inspired by Fox News host Laura Ingraham’s infamous plea that the NBA star “shut up and dribble.”
The three-part docuseries — and yes, “Shut Up and Dribble” is the actual title — will be executive produced by James and his business partner Maverick Carter, under their SpringHill Productions banner. The series will be directed by Gotham Chopra, who knows a thing or two about athlete-driven documentaries, having directed Facebook’s Tom Brady docuseries “Tom vs Time” and “Kobe Bryant’s Muse” for Showtime.
Showtime describes the three-part as “a powerful inside look at the changing role of athletes in our fraught cultural and political environment, through the lens of the NBA.”
Back in February, the conservative Fox News host called out James and fellow NBA star Kevin Durant for some anti-Trump remarks the pair made in an interview. “You’re great players; no one voted for you,” Ingraham said during her Feb. 15 show. “Millions elected Trump to be their coach. So keep the political commentary to yourself, or as someone once said, ‘shut up and dribble.'”
That will serve as the prologue for the series as it chronicles the modern history of the NBA and its players, starting with the 1976 merger of the freewheeling ABA and the more conventional NBA of today.
“If being a star athlete is inherently a political experience, ‘Shut Up and Dribble’ tells that complex and dramatic story from the past to the present and from the inside out,” said Nevins. “LeBron James is one of many competitors whose place in the spotlight has led not to silence but perspective, and he, Maverick Carter and Gotham Chopra have given us an important, insightful docuseries that should bring their fans and fellow citizens to a higher level of discourse, rather than the dismissal satirized in the title.”
“Shut Up and Dribble” will premiere sometime in October, right around the time LeBron James will make his highly-anticipated debut for the Los Angeles Lakers.
Rich Paul, Chopra, Martin Desmond Roe, Chris Uetwiller and Datari Turner are also executive producers.