Apple TV+ announced “The Big Cigar,” a new six-episode limited series executive produced and written by Jim Hecht (“Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty”), and executive produced and showrun by NAACP Image Award winner Janine Sherman Barrois (“Claws,” “The Kings of Napa”), with Don Cheadle (“No Sudden Move,” “Black Monday,” “House of Lies”) directing and executive producing the first two episodes.
Joshuah Bearman (“Argo”), who will also act as executive producer, wrote the eponymous magazine piece that will serve as a basis for the series. “The Big Cigar” tells the extraordinary, hilarious, almost-too-good-to-be-true story of how Newton relied on his best friend, Bert Schneider, the Hollywood producer behind “Easy Rider,” to elude a nationwide manhunt and escape to Cuba while being pursued into exile by the FBI, with André Holland (“The Eddy,” “Moonlight”) in talks to star as Black Panther leader Huey P. Newton.
“The Big Cigar” comes from Warner Bros. Television, where Sherman Barrois and her Folding Chair Productions have an overall deal. It was written by Hecht, and based on a story by Bearman and Hecht. Through their production company Epic, a subsidiary of Vox Media, Hecht and Sherman Barrois, as well as Bearman, Joshua Davis, and Arthur Spector (“Little America”), executive produce the drama.
The series is Apple TV+ and Warner Bros.’ latest collaboration. Following the recent series orders for “Shrinking,” a new comedy starring Jason Segel and Harrison Ford, with Segel also serving as writer and executive producer alongside “Ted Lasso” Emmy Award winners Bill Lawrence and Brett Goldstein; “Bad Monkey,” a new drama starring Vince Vaughn, who will also serve as executive producer; and the global hit series “Ted Lasso,” which broke records in 2021 as the most-nominated series; and the global hit series