Shohei Ohtani Interpreter Gambling Scandal in Development for a TV Series From Lionsgate

The gambling scandal surrounding Los Angeles Dodgers star player Shohei Ohtani is set to be developed into a TV series by Lionsgate Television.

Produced by Scott Delman (“Station Eleven”) and “Billion Dollar Fantasy” author Albert Chen, the series will chronicle Ohtani’s meteoric rise into Major League Baseball — including his 10-year, $700 million contract with the Dodgers — which was abruptly disrupted when his interpreter, Ippei Mizuhara, allegedly stole nearly $17 million from Ohtani to gamble and pay his own gambling debts.

Ohtani and the Dodgers fired Mizuhara following the allegations and Mizuhara subsequently turned himself in to federal authorities. The news comes shortly after the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California announced that Mizuhara has agreed to plead guilty to stealing the money from Ohtani.

In addition to serving as an executive producer for “Station Eleven,” Delman has won 13 Tony Awards and six Olivier Awards for his role as a producer on Broadway hits, including “The Book of Mormon,” “Death of a Salesman,” “All The Way,” “Raisin in the Sun,” “The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-Time” and “The Ferryman.”

“With a strong track record of creating daring, boundary-pushing series, Lionsgate Television is the perfect partner to bring this unbelievable story to the screen,” Delman said in a statement. “In addition, Albert’s extensive sports journalism background will enable us to connect the dots to make sense of the startling turn of events we’ve seen play out on the world stage.”

Chen honed his expertise in sports and baseball by covering the sport as a senior editor at Sports Illustrated and has served as a contributor for the MLB Network. He also cocreated, cohosted and produced Webby Award-winning podcast “All American,” which hailed from Stitcher and SiriusXM.

“This is Major League Baseball’s biggest sports gambling scandal since Pete Rose — and at its center is its biggest star, one that MLB has hitched its wagon on,” Chen said. “We’ll get to the heart of the story — a story of trust, betrayal and the trappings of wealth and fame.”

The new project joins Lionsgate TV’s development slate, which also includes the first English-language series adaptation of Park Chan-wook’s film “Oldboy.” The new series will be overseen by Lionsgate TV exec Max Elins, with Bryan Weiser negotiating the deal.

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