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Filming for Disney’s Greek Freak Film Set to Begin in Athens This Summer
by Gregory Pappas*
Plans for the Disney film about the rags to riches story of Giannis Antetokounmpo are taking shape, including the casting for the lead roles in the film, according to an exclusive story in Variety. Newcomer Uche Agada will star as the NBA great in the film, which is titled “Greek Freak” in honor of the nickname Antetokounmpo earned for his otherworldly basketball skills. In addition, Yetide Badaki is joining the film as Vera, Antetokounmpo’s mother, while Dayo Okeniyi will play Charles, his father.
The role will mark Agada’s onscreen debut. He auditioned after seeing a screengrab on Instagram of an announcement about the open casting call from Antetokounmpo’s Twitter.
The film is being developed by The Walt Disney Studios for streamer Disney Plus. It was first announced as being in development back in 2019. The live-action film is inspired by the true story of Antetokounmpo’s life and family. Arash Amel is attached to write with Akin Omotoso directing.
Production will begin later this year in both Greece and the United States, with the majority of the scenes to be shot in the same central Athens neighborhoods where Antetokounmpo used to hawk CDs and shoot hoops.
Born to Nigerian immigrants in Greece, Antetokounmpo started out playing basketball in Europe before moving to the U.S. in 2013 to play for the Milwaukee Bucks.
He quickly established himself as a major star on the team, and has since been named a two-time NBA Most Valuable Player, a five-time All Star, and NBA Defensive Player of the Year, among other accolades. He signed a five-year contract extension with the Bucks in December that is reportedly valued at $228 million
The article first appeared in The Pappas Post (pappaspost.com). Gregory Pappas is the publisher.