Will Smith is set to take on the role of New York City crime boss Nicky Barnes in his next Netflix film, The Council.
The production will re-unite Smith with Concussion helmer Peter Landesman, who wrote the screenplay for the new film and will also serve as executive producer.
The Council tells the story of a crime syndicate of seven African American men who ruled Harlem in the 1970s and early ‘80s. These men (no ordinary crime syndicate) dreamed of a self-sufficient and self-policing African American city-state funded by revolutionizing the drug game.
The movie will focus on the dramatic court intrigue between The Council’s king, Nick Barnes, and all the different members as one unlikely protégé emerges.
Barnes, born Leroy Nicholas Barnes, was famous during the 1970s. He led an international drug trafficking ring in partnership with the Italian American mafia. He was arrested in 1978 and sentenced to life imprisonment, where he became an informant, which led to the fall of The Council.
Barnes died from cancer in 2012.
Will Smith most recently played the magical Genie in Disney’s live-action film Aladdin.