Is HBO’s “Brothers In Atlanta” Pilot a Rip-off of Donald Glover’s FX “Atlanta” Pilot?

BY TER STAFF

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

News today surfaced that HBO is moving forward with the Lorne Michaels produced pilot, titled “Brother In Atlanta”. The series is written by and will star the duo of Late Night With Jimmy Fallon writers Diallo Riddle and Bashir Salahuddin, and is described as a comedy about two struggling entertainers Moose (Salahuddin) and Langston (Riddle) trying to navigate relationships and life in the black mecca of Atlanta, GA. The series will also have reoccuring roles from Maya Rudolph (who will play an R&B diva) and Jaden Smith. The series will begin shooting in Atlanta this spring.

This show may seem like deja vu for many though, as another similar series themed around Atlanta is in the works. Late last year, FX gave a pilot order to Donald Glover’s (Childish Gambino) new comedy AtlantaAtlanta is described as a comedy that revolves around two cousins on their way up through the Alanta rap scene. Donald Glover is starting, writing and executively producing the series, which of course will be filmed in Atlanta.

A straight rip-off? Who knows, but it sure seems like a fairly big coincidence as the shows have much more in common than just use of “Atlanta” in their title. Both are comedy shows that center around two African-American entertainers who have a close relationship with each other. Both series center around the Atlanta music scene, and outside the script itself, both series have writers who serve as lead actors. Not to mention the fact that Donald Glover also has a relationship with “Brothers In Atlanta”‘s executive producer Lorne Michaels (as Glover used to write for “30 Rock”) and its co-star Jaden Smith (who is a good friend of Glover and who contributed on his last mixtape). What is different about the pilots? In one they are friends and in one they are cousins. Also in one, both are struggling in the music industry, when in the other, just one is struggling. That is about it, in terms of differences.

Since TV has been around for quite some time, you can always say one show sounds like another, but this seems way too similar for two shows that are both in their pilot stages.

One response to “Is HBO’s “Brothers In Atlanta” Pilot a Rip-off of Donald Glover’s FX “Atlanta” Pilot?

  1. I’m excited for Atlanta to come out. People need to let Glover rock and stop stealing his shine. I don’t know how they are going to have both of the shows on television and make them unique enough to stand on their own as separate entities. And cue the gimmick…

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