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Jamie Foxx started his career decades ago performing as a comedian before landing TV roles on In Living Color and The Jamie Foxx Show. After finding success in the TV medium, he successfully transitioned into feature film work, which has defined a large percentage of his career. Now, however, he’s heading back to TV to executive produce and to appear in a brand new comedy for Showtime.
News broke this week that Showtime is producing a pilot for White Famous, a potential half-hour comedy that would follow a talented young comedian who is becoming more popular. He’ll have to navigate staying true to himself while figuring out what it means to become “white famous,” thus the title. Obviously, Jamie Foxx is a lot of things, but I don’t think any of us would describe him as a “young man.” He’s not playing the lead in White Famous, but THR says he will recur on the new series.
The move is quite similar to what happened with Limitless this past TV season. Bradley Cooper was involved in an executive producing capacity on the CBS drama, but he also opted to factor into the series by making appearances a few times throughout the season. Unfortunately, the added star power didn’t help that series (it was surprisingly cancelled), but it could be just what White Famous needs to be a success for Showtime.
Jamie Foxx might only be recurring if the potential comedy moves forward, but he’s involved with White Famous in a lot of ways. As noted prior, he’s executive producing. In addition, White Famous actually seems to be coming together from an idea Foxx had and pitched. Californication’s Tom Kapinos is writing the script for the project, and Lionsgate TV and Showtime are co-producing. Honestly, it's becoming increasingly common for popular film actors to take side gigs on TV, but Jamie Foxx's addition to the Showtime lineup would still be extremely welcome.
In addition to the work on White Famous, Jamie Foxx does have other movie projects in the works, including Robin Hood: Origins and Sleepless. Showtime also has a few other projects that have not yet been picked up to series, including The Chi and Mating.
It could be some time before we learn whether or not White Famous will move forward or not. That’s the hard part. The good news is that if it moves forward it will probably enjoy at least a fairly lengthy run on the subscription cabler. The network’s other series Homeland, for instance, is in talks for a huge 2-season renewal, keeping it around through Season 8. Other Showtime problems such as Dexter and Californication have also enjoyed lengthy runs.