As reported by Variety, Common is attached to star in a TV adaptation of Marc Olden’s 1974 book Black Samurai. That book inspired a blaxploitation movie of the same name in 1977 starring Jim Kelly, but it sounds like this TV project is going to skew a little closer to the book. As Variety tells it, the show will follow a guy named Robert Sand (Common) who is “rescued by a Japanese samurai master and trained for seven years.” Once his “teacher and fellow samurai” are killed by terrorists, he “becomes a killing machine” and tries to get revenge. As you may notice, one interesting commission from that summary is any indication of when this Black Samurai will take place, which opens the door for all sorts of interesting twists—or more realistic non-twists.
Black Samurai is being executive produced by martial-arts aficionado RZA, and it’s currently being shopped around to networks. With Common on board, though, Variety says it is “already garnering much interest.”