EXCLUSIVE: Denzel Washington‘s son John David Washington is following in his father’s footsteps with his first major acting role, signing on as a regular in the HBO pilot Ballers toplined by Dwayne Johnson. Also cast in the half-hour dramedy, which chronicles the lives of several Miami-based athletes, is former Bruins player Donovan Carter. Washington will play Ricky, a highly competitive and highly spiritual pro athlete. Carter will play Vernon, a deeply family oriented pro athlete. Washington, whose only previous acting credit is a small part in his dad’s 1992 movie Malcolm X, played football in college and did a stint with NFL’s St. Louis Rams. 

Robert Hoffman (90210) has been cast in the Krista Vernoff/Diane Warren E! drama pilot Songbyrd. It centers on Lauren Byrd (Bethany Joy Lenz), writer of hit love songs, who employs a small staff, including her sister Mickey (Rumer Willis), to enable and manage her eccentric yet wildly successful process. Hoffman will play Chris Spencer, Lauren’s creative affairs director who is helplessly in love with her, a fact she is clueless about. Additionally, Hoffman, repped by Impression Entertainment, Pakula/King & Assoc. and Hansen, Jacobsen, has booked a recurring role on NBC’s midseason medical drama The Night Shift.  He will play Thad, who served a turn in Afghanistan with his brother TC (Eion Macken).