Idris Elba is to step back into the boxing ring for a BBC Two series, in which he will provide seven disadvantaged young people with lessons in discipline, focus and determination by putting them through an experimental boxing school.
Idris Elba’s Fight School is a four-part series produced by Workerbee, the Banijay-owned producer behind Quibi series Elba vs. Block, and the Luther actor’s production company Green Door Pictures.
Living and training together over six intense months in London, the school recruits will battle it out against other amateurs and work towards a big showcase finale. They will be trained in the ring by former boxing champions.
If they can stick it out, the no-holds-barred, rough-and-ready experience will motivate them to make positive changes, but only if they are open to them. Along the way, they will be mentored by Elba, who has been through similar training himself for Discovery’s Idris Elba: Fighter.
Elba said: “I see history constantly repeating itself and can empathize with these kids. I believe there is a better way to teach people that you don’t need knives to protect yourself. It’s a proven fact that in urban areas where fight schools open, violent crime drops dramatically – which is why I wanted to do this project, in hope that we can change people’s lives. I want this project to be an ongoing presence that will continue to provide support and education for the community for years to come.”
Idris Elba’s Fight School was commissioned by BBC Two controller Patrick Holland, alongside Catherine Catton and Michael Jochnowitz. The executive producers for Workerbee are Rick Murray and Michelle Chappell, and for Green Door Pictures are Elba and Lorraine Burgess.
BBC Two has also ordered Premier League in The Premiership: A Whole New Ball Game (working title), a four-part documentary that will chart the creation and evolution of the Premier League from 1992 to 2000. Produced by Story Films in association with Studio 99, it will feature access to players, agents, journalists and business brains to reveal how the competition shaped social change in Britain. The executive producers are David Nath and Peter Beard.
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