Negro League Baseball Drama in the Works at Apple With Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson Producing

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Apple is developing a drama series about Negro League Baseball, Variety has learned.

The streamer has acquired the rights to the non-fiction book “If You Were Only White: The Life of Leroy ‘Satchel’ Paige” by Donald Spivey to develop as a series. It will explore the story of Negro League Baseball using the life and legacy of the legendary athlete and showman Leroy “Satchel” Paige, one of baseball’s greatest pitchers and star of Negro Leagues for many years.

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Paige is a baseball legend, having been inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1971. He played for a number of Negro League teams in his career and went on to play for multiple Major League Baseball teams as well starting with the Cleveland Indians in 1948.

Apple and Kapital Entertainment will co-produce the series. In addition, they are partnering with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, which is dedicated to preserving and celebrating the history of African American baseball. The project is also supported by MLB.

Earvin “Magic” Johnson will produce along with Peter Guber, Ron Shelton, John Mass, Jason Smith, and Kapital’s Aaron Kaplan and Dana Honor.

Should the project move forward it would not be the first sports series to be set up at Apple. The streamer currently airs the comedy “Ted Lasso” starring Jason Sudeikis. Sudeikis stars as an American football coach who moves to England to head up an English Premier League Team. The show has become a critical darling, with Sudeikis taking home the Golden Globe for best actor in a comedy. It is widely seen as a strong contender in this year’s Emmy race. The second season is slated to drop on July 23.

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