Julian Elijah Martinez and Dave East are set as series regulars and The Sopranos alum Vinnie Pastore will recur in Hulu’s Wu-Tang: An American Saga, a 10-episode drama from Wu-Tang Clan frontman The RZA, writer Alex Tse (Superfly) and Imagine Television. In addition, Craig Zisk will direct two episodes of the series and co-executive produce.
Created and written by The RZA and Tse, the series is based on the Wu-Tang Clan, one of the most influential groups in hip-hop history, and will explore and expand the band’s world.
Set in early ’90s New York at the height of the crack cocaine epidemic, the show tracks the Clan’s formation, a vision of Bobby Diggs (Ashton Sanders) aka The RZA, who strives to unite a dozen young, black men that are torn between music and crime but eventually rise to become the unlikeliest of American success stories.
Martinez will portray Divine. Clean cut and serious, Divine wears the uniform of a street boss. At a young age, he’s become a name to be remembered, but is ready to move a step up. He keeps a tight watch on his crew, often coming down hard on his little brother, Bobby. When Divine gets locked up, he tries to keep the operation moving from behind bars.
East will play Shotgun. Tall, with a knack for rhymes, Shotgun takes pride in being the assistant manager at the concession stand next to the Statue of Liberty. A popular figure in Staten Island, he stays above the turf wars.
Pastore will recur as Larry, who runs a local rib joint and can be found chatting his customers ears off about the lavish history of Staten Island and its Italian influence.
Imagine’s Brian Grazer and Francie Calfo will executive produce with Tse, Zisk and Wu-Tang Clan members The RZA and Method Man. Fellow Wu-Tang Clan members Ghostface Killa, Inspectah Deck, Masta Killa and GZA as well as the Estate of Ol’ Dirty Bastard, will serve as consulting producers. James Seidman will oversee the project for Imagine.
Martinez, whose credits include Elementary and Madame Secretary, can currently be seen in Network on Broadway. He’s repped by UTA and Laura Gibson for management.
MC, rapper and actor East is known for his 2014 mixtape “Black Rose.” His collaboration titled, “NYCHA,” featuring Nas, is part of the soundtrack for the Netflix documentary, Rapture. He’s repped by UTA.
Pastore, known as Big Pussy on The Sopranos, just wrapped the feature Made in Chinatown. He also recurred in Hawaii Five O. Pastore is repped by Abrams Artists Agency and manager Bob McGowan.
Zisk most recently was the executive producer and director for Hulu’s Looming Tower and has additionally helmed episodes of Hulu’s Future Man, HBO’s Veep, AMC’s Fear The Walking Dead, AMC’s Preacher, Showtime’s Weeds, NBC’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine and NBC’s This Is Us. Zisk is repped by UTA.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.