by: Madison Barnes
Justin Timberlake is set to learn some basketball tricks for his upcoming role in RELEASE: THE JACK RYAN STORY. The multi-talented artist has been in talks about acting in the film, and it’s now confirmed that he will star as the basketball prodigy himself.
The biopic chronicles the life of legendary street player Jack Ryan (no… not the Tom Clancy character) who was one of the most gifted white players on the streets of New York. LDI Entertainment is producing the indie, and they’re still looking for a director to helm the project.
Timberlake’s official addition to the project greatly raises its profile, and even stretches the public image many have of him. It doesn’t look like it will feature him singing, dancing, or involve intricate action sequences, so it’s automatically a more interesting choice. The ability to pull off some of these basketball tricks will also push him into an “arena” we aren’t used to seeing him in. I’m actually really excited to see what he does with the role.
Antonio Macia is penning the script, which is based on Ryan’s life story, as well as the documentary with the same name. It will show how the basketball prodigy almost threw his life away, dropping out of college and going to work in the Fulton Fish Market of lower Manhattan.
Ryan was gifted at basketball from a young age, but never driven enough to care about grades, the NBA , or even a normal career. Eventually he was approached by the Harlem Wizards to join their entertainment-style basketball team, and he felt at home on the team. After the team grew apart over time, Ryan left to start a solo career as a basketball trick-artist, and used the experience he had with the Wizards get his life back on track and utilize his amazing skills.
Julie Yorn and Rick Yorn are producing the film, along with Patrick Walmsley executive producing. Rick Yorn is Timberlake’s manager for film and television projects, so Timberlake may have a bigger role on the producing side than what has been announced so far. Make sure you stay glued to the Tracking Board for all the updates to the film!