Jerry West’s Lawyers Demand Retraction From HBO Over ‘Winning Time’ – The Hollywood Reporter

Jerry West’s authorized group needs an apology and retraction for his portrayal in HBO’s Los Angeles Lakers-focused sequence Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty.

In a press release obtained by ESPN, which the outlet states was despatched to the community and govt producer Adam McKay, representatives for the previous Lakers participant, coach and common supervisor mentioned the sequence “falsely and cruelly portrays Mr. West as an out-of-control, intoxicated rage-aholic.” The sequence, centering on the Showtime period of the storied Lakers franchise in the course of the Eighties, contains Jason Clarke as West and John C. Reilly as then-team proprietor Dr. Jerry Buss.

“The portrayal of NBA icon and LA Lakers legend Jerry West in Winning Time is fiction pretending to be fact — a deliberately false characterization that has caused great distress to Jerry and his family,” mentioned the assertion from lawyer Skip Miller of legislation agency Miller Barondess, LLP. “Contrary to the baseless portrayal in the HBO series, Jerry had nothing but love for and harmony with the Lakers organization, and in particular owner Dr. Jerry Buss, during an era in which he assembled one of the greatest teams in NBA history.”

West’s group is asking that the present difficulty a retraction inside two weeks, in response to ESPN. “Jerry West was an integral part of the Lakers and NBA’s success,” the message continued. “It is a travesty that HBO has knowingly demeaned him for shock value and the pursuit of ratings. As an act of common decency, HBO and the producers owe Jerry a public apology and at the very least should retract their baseless and defamatory portrayal of him.”

HBO didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

This follows Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, portrayed on the present by Solomon Hughes, criticizing the sequence earlier Tuesday for “crude stick-figure” characters. The six-time NBA champion, who has written for The Hollywood Reporter as a contributing editor, singled out the present’s characterization of West and mentioned that scenes of him dropping his mood “reek of facile exploitation of the man rather than exploration of character.”

In a visitor column for THR printed final month, NBA uber-agent and present Detroit Pistons vice chairman Arn Tellem took difficulty with the sequence’ “cruel, dishonest and staggeringly insensitive” depiction of West. Of the present’s many characterizations, Tellem referred to that of West as “the most brutal — and gratuitous — character assassination.”

During a latest interview with THR, Jason Segel, who performs former Lakers assistant coach Paul Westhead, mentioned that the present “is not a docuseries” and, when requested concerning the pushback it has acquired, added, “I think the show is made with a ton of love.” Castmember Rob Morgan (Earvin Johnson Sr.) equally advised THR not too long ago that the individuals behind the sequence “are not documentarians” and that he hoped viewers might “do their own research.”

Winning Time, which was not too long ago picked up for a second season, relies on Jeff Pearlman’s e-book Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty. The present is created by Max Borenstein and Jim Hecht, and it counts McKay, who directed the pilot, as an govt producer.

Also a part of the ensemble forged are Quincy Isaiah (Magic Johnson), Adrien Brody (Pat Riley), Hadley Robinson (Jeanie Buss), Gaby Hoffmann (Claire Rothman) and Sally Field (Jessie Buss).

Months earlier than the present’s March 6 sequence premiere, Magic Johnson made it clear that the challenge didn’t have his blessing, telling TMZ that he was “not looking forward to it” and had no plans to look at.

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