Daily Variety reports that Futurama co-creator and exec. producer David X. Cohen and rapper/actor Ice Cube (Barbershop, Anaconda) are teaming to produce a half-hour animated series for Fox Television. The broadcaster has ordered a pilot for Grandmaster Freak & The Furious 15, a comedy rooted in the burgeoning hip-hop scene of the 1980s.
Set in Englewood, N.J., birthplace of pioneering rap label Sugar Hill Records, Grandmaster Freak will center on a 17-year-old high school student who leads an old-school rap crew. In addition to using vintage hits from the Sugar Hill Gang and other trailblazers, the series will incorporate original musical numbers. Ice Cube is likely to provide a voice but he will not play the lead.
The show was created by Cohen, who will write and exec produce with Cube Vision, the production shingle of Ice Cube and his producing partner, Matt Alvarez. Alvarez and Cube also serve as exec producers.
Cube Vision exec produced the hit film, Barbershop, and recently hooked up with State Street to develop a TV version for Showtime. Ice Cube will next appear in the Columbia Pictures holiday film, Are We There Yet?, the first pic under a partnership between Cube Vision and Revolution Studios.