Electus is teaming with Michael Franzese, the ex-mob boss known as the “Yuppie Don,” to create American Royalty, a scripted drama series based on his book and experiences. Moshe Diamant and Michael Tadross Jr. will produce the project that’s described as a modern spin on the crime genre that takes goes deep into the dark trenches of the leading mob families.
Based on Franzese’s memoir Quitting the Mob: How the “Yuppie Don” Left the Mafia and Lived to Tell His Story, the series will be set in New York City from the 1950s through the 1980s, when so many notorious, bigger-than-life mobsters reigned — often bringing politicians and corporate executives to their knees. The son of reputed Colombo underboss John “Sonny” Franzese, who reigned over its Long Island rackets in the 1960s, the younger Franzese was a capo of the family who was heavily involved in the gasoline tax rackets in the 1980s. Father and son knew all the main players, the rackets and the most intimate family secrets.
“American Royalty is a mafia version of Game of Thrones but with an important distinction – everything you see onscreen is true,” Michael Franzese said. “You may have seen these legendary figures in documentaries, but never in a scripted series that really explores who they were and what they controlled, as told by one of their own. American Royalty is the real story of the mob’s business, activities, players, what they controlled and how eventually they all went down – informed by my own eyewitness accounts, testimonies and personal writings.”
Said John Pollak, President of Worldwide Television and Electus International: “American Royalty presents a modern take on a beloved genre, and its unflinching look at life inside the mafia will captivate viewers around the world. The series will be comprised of tales spanning decades and generations, using real accounts to tell the story.”
No timeframe for the series was announced.