Variety has confirmed that an eight-part series about boxing icon Muhammad Ali, by Regé-Jean Page, Morgan Freeman, and Kevin Willmott, is underway on Peacock.
Written by Academy Award-winning author Willmott (known for BlacKkKlansman, Da 5 Bloods), the eight-part series titled “Excellence: 8 Fights,” is a scripted drama series based on Jonathan Eig’s latest autobiography, Ali: A Life.
Bridgerton star, Page and Freeman join the board as executive producers, as do Revelations Entertainment’s Willmott and Laurie McCreary, and Emily Brown. Eig will serve as producer along with CBS Studios and UCP.
According to the show’s official description, Excellence: 8 Fights will “tell eight distinct, pivotal moments in Muhammad Ali’s iconic life.
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Inside Fight – Drama Outside the Ring – where we examine the struggle in the heart and mind of one of the most influential and controversial figures of the 20th century.”
This has been a longtime passion project for Revelations and a top priority for CBS Studios, where the company is headquartered. They teamed up to acquire Eig’s book shortly after its publication in October 2017 and began developing it as a series of events.
A different version of the project with writer Dan Kay landed at CBS All Access in a competitive situation in the spring of 2018.
Since then, the field has reshaped itself, with Wilmot as writer and executive producer and Bridgerton and Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Of Thieves with Page as executive producer.
Wilmott is an Academy Award-winning film director and screenwriter and professor of film at the University of Kansas. He is known for working on projects like BlackKklansman, Da 5 Bloods, 24, Chi-Raq and Jayhawkers with a focus on the black experience.