John Wells Developing Lifeguard Drama & ‘Things That Make White People Uncomfortable’-Inspired Series At HBO Max

John Wells has set up two more shows at HBO Max including a lifeguard drama from Animal Kingdom writer Matt Kester and a series inspired by the book Things That Make White People Uncomfortable.

This comes after The West Wing and Shameless exec producer’s latest HBO Max project, pilot Red Bird Lane, named Susan Sarandon among its cast.

Both shows, which are in development, come from John Wells Production via his overall deal with Warner Bros. Television.

Ke Nui Road is a contemporary drama set on the North Shore of Oahu, focusing on the relationships between an elite crew of heavy-water lifeguards and the teens and young adults they mentor and train in the junior lifeguard program. The junior guards program embodies the beauty, the danger, the struggle, and the spirit of aloha — all centered on the ocean — that is modern Hawaii.

It is written and exec produced by Kester, who has also worked on Forever, and is exec produced by Wells and Erin Jontow.

Things That Make White People Uncomfortable is inspired by Michael Bennett and Dave Zirin’s book of the same name. It is a one-hour anthology series that has one goal: to make white people uncomfortable. The theme of the first season is ‘the danger of white liberal thought.’ Each episode will take a hard look at how white liberal thought has impacted American society and contributed to the state of race relations in America today.

It is written and exec produced by Rodney Barnes, who recently wrote on Hulu’s Wu-Tang: An American Saga and is penning HBO’s Untitled Lakers Project. It is exec produced by Power and American Crime Story director Anthony Hemingway and Lyah LeFlore via Anthony Hemingway Productions and Wells and Jontow with Michael Bennett as consulting producer.

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