Sean Patrick Small Career Highlight : The HBO show “Winning Time,” in which Sean Patrick Small played Boston Celtics player Larry Bird, was his professional highlight.
He told TheWrap in an exclusive interview before the SAG-AFTRA scandal that “combining acting with basketball and playing one of basketball’s greatest players is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
Small started unknowingly prepping for this part in 2014 while working on a miniseries depicting Bird’s high school-to-college journey. Bird’s life was shown from his senior year of high school to his first year of college.
Bird’s life facts surprised him. Bird’s identity was influenced by his short time at Indiana University, his decision to leave out, his county employment, which included painting park benches and clearing up trash every week, his friends, and his father’s terrible death. “This season, we’ll show how complex our understanding of Bird as a person is,” Small added. “We’ll discuss his background and legacy,”
Small says Episode 3 was difficult because he had to show Bird hitting a basketball in jeans. In high school, he loved basketball. This helped.
He remembered that it was much hotter than basketball gear could manage. Practices in jeans helped to film feel authentic. This improved his self-esteem, offered Bird a new start, and increased on-screen banter. He said, “Reenacting Bird’s signature no-look passes and tricky shots reminded me of his unmatched skill,” and I was impressed.
He appears on TV with Michael Chiklis, who plays Boston Celtics coach Red Auerbach and stars with Small. Chiklis discussed the Lakers-Celtics rivalry he witnessed at Boston University from 1981 through 1985. The show happened then.
Chiklis claimed the role was “bittersweet” since it reminded him of his Red Auerbach enthusiast father. My father followed Auerbach’s ethics and philosophy but is elsewhere to see it. Chiklis read Bill Russell’s “Red and Me: My Coach, My Lifelong Friend” biography to prepare for his role.
After reading, Chiklis said, “The book painted a vivid picture of Red, capturing the essence of his brilliance.” “The book vividly described Red.” “YouTube videos helped me understand his coaching style and how much his players respected him.”
Chiklis and Small became fast friends, teachers, and students on and off the film. Working with Chiklis and learning from him made Small happy.
The ensemble cast includes Quincy Isaiah, Adrien Brody, John C. Reilly, and Jason Clarke.
Max Borenstein, Jim Hecht, Salli Richardson-Whitfield, and Jason Shuman made “Winning Time” spectacular. Hyperobject Industries, led by Adam McKay and Kevin Messick