Smith, the son of actors Will and Jada Pinkett Smith who has already led films like The Karate Kid and After Earth, is the biggest get yet for the Netflix series, which explores the birth of various musical forms on the rough-and-tumble streets of New York through the eyes of the wild, energetic South Bronx teenagers for whom musical expression was a way of life.
The 16-year-old actor has snagged the recurring role of Marcus “Dizzee” Kipling, 18, a “psychedelically talented and enigmatic graffiti writer.” Along with the other young characters, Dizzee serves as an unwitting pioneer of hip-hop, rap, punk and dance, music forms which reflect the difficult nature of his existence.
The largely ethnic cast of The Get Down already includes Dexter alum Jimmy Smits as Francisco Cruz, aka “Papa Fuerte,” a political player in the area who uses his authority to deliver jobs, housing, health care and other necessary services that the city is denying Bronx residents; and Herizen Guardiola, Dope‘s Shameik Moore, Justice Smith, Skylan Brooks and T.J. Brown Jr. as various young people living in the South Bronx.
Here’s the official synopsis:
The one-hour, 13-episode drama from Sony Pictures Television will focus on 1970s New York City – broken down and beaten up, violent, cash strapped — dying. Consigned to rubble, a rag-tag crew of South Bronx teenagers are nothings and nobodies with no one to shelter them – except each other, armed only with verbal games, improvised dance steps, some magic markers and spray cans. From Bronx tenements, to the SoHo art scene; from CBGBs to Studio 54 and even the glass towers of the just-built World Trade Center, The Get Down is a mythic saga of how New York at the brink of bankruptcy gave birth to hip-hop, punk and disco — told through the lives and music of the South Bronx kids who changed the city, and the world…forever.
The Get Down arrives on Netflix next year.