Kumail Nanjiani has signed on to star in Immigrant, an eight-episode show Hulu has given a straight-to-series order. It will be based on the true story of Indian-American entrepreneur and Chippendales founder, Somen ‘Steve’ Banerjee. Nanjiani will play Banerjee and also executive produce alongside series writer Robert Siegel (The Wrestler, The Founder).
Immigrant will chronicle Banerjee’s journey to success, which was made for a series like this, as it’s filled with insane incidents, crime-ridden pit stops, and darkly comedic turns that turned a risqué male revue into the revolutionary cultural phenomenon.
This is actually the second project revolving around Banerjee in the works. The other is a true crime movie set to star Dev Patel as the entrepreneur, with I, Tonya director Craig Gillespie at the helm.
That one will focus on Banerjee becoming entangled with career grifter Paul Snider, attorney Bruce Nahin, and Snider’s wife, Playboy model Dorothy Stratten, which culminates in a very sad ending.
It’s unclear whether Immigrant will go down that route, or whether the show will focus more on the rise of Chippendales, and not Banerjee’s late career downfall. As a comedian, obviously Nanjiani is more comfortable in that zone, but he has branched out a little in recent years with the comedy/drama The Big Sick and the upcoming MCU film, Eternals.
So we’ll have to wait for more information to see what sort of tone the show will take. This isn’t the only real-life story Siegel is currently writing, as he’s also penning the upcoming limited series Pam & Tommy, which will focus on the lives of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee as the first ever viral video – their sex tape – is leaked to the world.
Nanjiani’s only other project is Eternals – directed by recent Best Director Oscar winner Chloe Zhao – which is currently set for a Friday, November 5th release.