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Monday, January 28, 2013

Laker Metta World Peace Prepping Sports-Themed Hidden-Camera Show

By Lesley Goldberg

Los Angeles Lakers forward Metta World Peace is looking to punk a few fellow athletes.

The NBA star is shopping a sports-themed hidden-camera prank series titled Metta World Pranks, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

From LMNO Productions -- the producers behind CBS' hidden-camera series I Get That a Lot and Fire Me … Please -- the show will feature World Peace and other professional athletes playing pranks on one another as well as their family members, friends, spouses and fans. The project is being shopped to broadcast and cable networks.

"Pranking and practical jokes are part of the athletic culture, so it comes naturally to Metta," LMNO Productions president and CEO Eric Schotz said. "Metta has a great sense of humor, and this show will be a natural vehicle for him to showcase a side of his personality we don't get to see on the court."

Established in 1989, LMNO has produced 60 series for network, cable and syndicated television, including Unusual Suspects, The Little Couple and Wedding Central. "This particular show will give me the opportunity to be funny, creative and entertain audiences, all while being able to collaborate with my friends and colleagues. I can't think of a show idea that is more fun and a perfect fit for me," the Lakers forward said.

The project marks the latest small-screen endeavor for the outspoken athlete formerly known as Ron Artest. In 2010, he was prepping a reality series centering on his life in the spotlight. His TV appearances include a contestant stint on the 13th cycle of ABC's Dancing With the Stars (he was the first eliminated and finished last) and an appearance on MTV's Punk'd reboot last year.

Metta World Pranks comes three years after World Peace launched Artest Media Group, which consults pro athletes, recording artists, music producers and entertainers on developing and building their brands and careers.

World Peace is repped by Paradigm, Artest Media Group and the Davis Firm.

If picked up to series, the entry would mark the latest in a line of hidden-camera efforts including Punk'd, Lifetime's Prank My Mom, TBS' Deal With It (from Howie Mandel) and Donald Faison's Who Gets The Last Laugh?

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