We’ve been hearing about Adam McKay’s new HBO drama series about the 1980s Los Angeles Lakers for a while now, with names like Adrien Brody, Sally Field, Michael Chiklis, John C. Reilly, and plenty more all signed on for this massive ensemble, and it turns out that the cast had a couple of more big names to add to the cast list.
Variety is reporting that Jason Segel and Bo Burnham are both now on board, with Segel portraying Lakers’ assistant coach Paul Westhead, and Burnham taking on the role of none other than Boston Celtics player Larry Bird himself. Burnham will be suiting up alongside some of the legendary names on the Lakers team, including Quincy Isaiah as Magic Johnson and Solomon Hughes as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
These two actors are intriguing names to be added into the mix, as both are known predominantly for their comedic work but have stepped into much more dramatic territory in recent years. Segel received critical acclaim for his performances in Our Friend and The End of the Tour, the latter of which saw him take on the role of David Foster Wallace. Burnham, meanwhile, has been garnering plenty of love this awards season for his performance in Promising Young Woman, and wrote and directed the beloved A24 film Eighth Grade back in 2018.
Considering that McKay himself is someone who transitioned from the world of comedy to being an Oscar-winning dramatic director, perhaps these casting choices actually aren’t too surprising.
The series is produced by McKay, who already directed the first episode. Max Borenstein wrote and produced the series, based on Jeff Pearlman’s book “Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s”.