John Wells & Matt Kester’s Lifeguard Drama ‘Ke Nui Road’ Picked Up To Pilot At HBO Max

John Wells
John Wells Courtesy of Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

EXCLUSIVE: HBO Max has ordered a pilot of Ke Nui Road, a lifeguard drama from John Wells and Animal Kingdom writer Matt Kester.

The West Wing and Shameless exec producer had set up the project in development at the streamer last year as part of his overall deal with Warner Bros. Television.

Kester, who also has worked on WGN’s Outsiders and ABC’s Forever, will write and exec produce the pilot, which will be directed and exec produced by Wells. Erin Jontow, President of Television at John Wells Productions, also will exec produce.

2020-21 HBO Max Pilots & Series Orders

Ke Nui Road is a contemporary drama set on the North Shore of Oahu, focusing on the relationships between an elite crew of heavy-water lifeguards and the teens and young adults they mentor and train in the junior lifeguard program. The junior guards program embodies the beauty, the danger, the struggle, and the spirit of aloha — all centered on the ocean — that is modern Hawaii.

Ke Nui Road is Wells’ latest project with the streamer. He recently piloted psychological drama Red Bird Lane, starring Susan Sarandon and written by Sara Gran, but HBO Max opted in February not to proceed.

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