'Rise': 5 things to know about Disney+ sports biographical drama based on Antetokounmpo brothers
Basketball fans have a lot to look forward to in June, and it's not just about the NBA Finals. While Adam Sandler brings his much-awaited ball flick, 'Hustle' with LeBron James serving as one of the producers, Disney+ will roll out 'Rise', a sports biographical drama based on the three brothers — Giannis Antetokounmpo, Thanasis, and Kostas — all of who are part of the NBA. Developed initially with 'Greek Freak' as the working title, it was later renamed to 'Rise'. Giannis serves as one of the executive producers.
In his official statement, the Milwaukee Bucks star said, "I am thrilled and honored that Disney+ is bringing my family’s story to people all over the world. My hope is that it will inspire those in similar circumstances to keep the faith, stay true to their goals, and not give up on striving for a better life."
When will 'Rise' release?
The sports drama is all set to release on June 24 on Disney+.
What is 'Rise' all about?
Based on the true story of three Nigerian-Greek brothers who emigrated to the United States, the movie charts the trio's rise to success in the NBA. The three brothers — Giannis Antetokounmpo, Thanasis, and Kostas were all skilled basketball players who made a mark for themselves in the circuit.
The official synopsis reads, "After emigrating from Nigeria to Greece, Charles and Vera Antetokounmpo (Dayo Okeniyi and Yetide Badaki, respectively) struggled to survive and provide for their five children while living under the daily threat of deportation. With their oldest son still in Nigeria with relatives, the couple were desperate to obtain Greek citizenship but found themselves undermined by a system that blocked them at every turn."
"When they weren’t selling items to tourists on the streets of Athens with the rest of the family, the brothers-- Giannis (Uche Agada) and Thanasis (Ral Agada)--would play basketball with a local youth team. Latecomers to the sport, the brothers discovered their great abilities on the basketball court and worked hard to become world-class athletes, along with their brother, Kostas (Jaden Osimuwa). With the help of an agent, Giannis entered the NBA Draft in 2013 as a long-shot prospect that would change not only his life but the life of his entire family. And last season, Giannis and Thanasis helped bring the Milwaukee Bucks their first championship ring in 50 years, while Kostas played for the previous season champs, the Los Angeles Lakers."
Who's in the cast?
Uche Agada plays Giannis Antetokounmpo, while Ral Agada and Jaden Osimuwa play Athanasios "Thanasis" and Kostantinos "Kostas". Also playing pivotal roles are Elijah Shomanke as Alexandros "Alex" Antetokounmpo, Anthony Abiola, Yetide Badaki, Dayo Okeniyi, Manish Dayal as Kevin, and Taylor Nichols as John Hammond.
Akin Omotoso ('Blood Diamond') helms the film based on the script from Arash Amel ('Grace of Monaco'). Bernie Goldmann serves as the producer.