If you loved Ridley Scott’s American Gangster, you’re going to love the news that a TV prequel series is in development with Forest Whitaker attached to play the role of mob boss Bumpy Johnson.
The series is due
Johnson was an African American mob boss and bookmaker in New York City’s Harlem neighbourhood. The main Harlem associates of the Luciano crime family and had strong connections to the civil rights movement, citing Malcolm X as one of his closest friends. The series could very well centre on the criminal underworld and the civil rights movement muddled crossover.
Johnson who became a bit of a celebrity in the mid 50’s with his activities reported in Jet, a weekly magazine aimed at African American readers, was arrested more than 40 times and eventually served three prison terms for narcotics-related charges. In December 1965, Johnson staged a sit-down strike in a police station, refusing to leave, as a protest against their continued surveillance. He was charged with “refusal to leave a police station” but was acquitted by a judge
The show is yet to find a title and a home for distribution but it’s looking likely it could come to a streaming service near you. US Rapper, Kendrick Lamar is top of the list to create the show’s soundtrack.