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Will Smith continues to diversify his resume thanks to an upcoming role for Netflix.

According to Shadow and Act, the entertainment guru will take on the role as Harlem crime boss Nicky Barnes for the movie The Council.

According to the official description, The Council is a “never-before-told story of a crime syndicate consisting of seven African-American men who ruled Harlem in the 1970s and early 80s.”

This is not your typical crime syndicate, however. According to the description, the men involved dream of a self-sufficient and self-policing African American city-state that’s fincanced by “revolutionizing the drug game.” The flick will focus on “the Shakespearean court intrigue between The Council’s king, Nicky Barnes, dubbed ‘Mr. Untouchable’ by the New York Times, and all the different members as one unlikely rising protégé emerges.”

This is definitely a twist to the crime lord narratives we’ve come to know over the years. It’ll join shows like Godfather of Harlem, which includes a more Black political lens to New York’s underworld.

Per Netflix’s description:

“Barnes, whose death was recently made known, was an American crime boss, active in New York City during the 1970s who led an international drug trafficking ring, in partnership with the Italian-American Mafia, until his arrest in 1978. Barnes was sentenced to life imprisonment, eventually becoming a federal informant.”

Peter Landesman, the writer for the movie Concussion, which also stars Smith, will pen the script for The Council. A director has yet to be attached.

Meanwhile Smith is staying busy with upcoming movies Gemini Man, Bad Boys for Life and the animated movie Spies in Disguise. 

We’ll keep you updated as more info on The Council surfaces!

Behind The Scenes: Will Smith To Play Harlem Crime Boss Nicky Barnes In New Movie  was originally published on