A multi-part docuseres about Jimmy Hoffa is in development at Village Roadshow Unscripted Television, Variety has learned.
News of the show comes ahead of the 50th anniversary of Hoffa’s disappearance, which occurred on July 30, 1975. The series is being made with the full cooperation of the Hoffa family, including the assistance of his son and daughter. It will also feature access to Hoffa’s personal archives and previously unseen files, as well as audio tapes, personal films, and declassified FBI files. Erik Nelson will produce and direct.
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“What caught our attention about Jimmy Hoffa’s story is that it is a compelling topic of interest and point of intrigue still for many,” said Shannon Perry, Village Roadshow Television’s executive vice president of reality & production services. It has all the elements of a captivating drama with power struggle, corruption, and a high-profile disappearance that also aligns with the kinds of impactful stories about notable, cultural figures that we want to tell.”
Hoffa rose to national prominence as the president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), a role he held from 1957 until 1971. He famously clashed with both John F. and Robert Kennedy during his time in office and was accused of a wide range of crimes and connections to organized crime figures. He was eventually imprisoned in 1967 but was released in 1971. He was then barred from returning to the IBT until 1980 as part of his commutation agreement with President Nixon. He was working to overturn that part of the agreement at the time of his disappearance.
“For so many years the world has focused on my father’s tragic demise, when the real story – how a boy living in depression era Indiana coal country with a widowed mother rose up in Detroit to become the president of, without argument, the most powerful union in America – has never really been told,” said James P. Hoffa, lawyer and the longest serving democratically elected General President of IBT. “My father’s working relationship with all of the civil rights leaders of his time towards the same goal: legitimizing and improving the lives working people. We hope that by opening our own family archive and working with Village Roadshow and Erik [Nelson], the full story can finally be told of a multifaceted and fascinating family man who helped create the American middle class.”
Hoffa has been portrayed onscreen in mutliple films, most recently by Al Pacino in the Martin Scorsese film “The Irishman,” with Pacino earning an Oscar nomination for the film. Jack Nicholson also played Hoffa in the film of the same name, directed by Danny DeVito. Sylvester Stallone also played a character largely inspired by Hoffa in the film “F.I.S.T.”
Nelson is repped by UTA.
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