LeBron James has made it to the NBA Finals down in Orlando, but his new home is in Burbank, as the Lakers forward and his SpringHill Company banner have signed a four-year first-look production deal with Universal Pictures, the studio announced Tuesday.
Universal is already working with SpringHill on an untitled film about young LeBron, based on the book Shooting Stars that James co-wrote with Buzz Bissinger, as well as other events in his life. Chris Robinson is directing from a script by Frank E. Flowers and Tony Rettenmaier & Juel Taylor. SpringHill is also developing Catch the Wave, based on an original pitch by Ali Kinney, as well as an adaptation of Jerry Craft‘s award-winning graphic novel New Kid. James also co-starred in Judd Apatow‘s Trainwreck, which was released by Universal.
James’ longtime business partner Maverick Carter serves as co-founder and CEO of SpringHill, whose staff also includes chief content officer Jamal Henderson and head of film Spencer Beighley.
“LeBron, Maverick and the team at SpringHill are content creators with a purpose, and we’re excited to partner with filmmakers who challenge us to tell stories that move culture forward,” Universal chairman Donna Langley said in a statement. “SpringHill’s projects are compelling, entertaining, inspiring and aim to start important conversations, which we need now more than ever. We’re already partnering with LeBron and Maverick on some exciting projects in active development, with more to come, and we look forward to leveraging our resources across the NBCU portfolio to amplify those titles and bring important voices like SpringHill to a global audience.”
“The SpringHill Company’s purpose is to empower greatness in every individual. With Universal, we’re aligned in making sure socially conscious and purposeful elements are felt in all of our stories, whether it’s a drama, comedy, family or even a horror film,” added Carter. “In the same spirit, this partnership allows us to empower creators to tell the stories important to them and culture on the studio projects in the film space. Universal has been an incredibly collaborative thought partner from vision to execution and it’s clear they value championing and telling diverse stories. We’re proud to be partnering with a studio that makes telling diverse stories a mandate and not an option.”
SpringHill is behind WB’s upcoming sequel Space Jam: A New Legacy, which pairs James with the studio’s Looney Tunes characters. The company’s other projects include Octavia Spencer‘s Netflix series Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker, and NBC’s game show The Wall.