NBA star (and Broad City alum) Blake Griffin is shooting to Double Cross pranksters
Pranksters, beware, because Blake Griffin is coming for you.
The six-time NBA All-Star (and one-time Broad City guest star) is shooting for laughs as the host of truTV's Double Cross With Blake Griffin, and EW has the exclusive trailer above.
Prank shows are nothing new, but Griffin and his Double Cross team have drawn up a twist: The prankster is the one who gets pranked in the end. Debuting March 19, episodes will feature the former Slam Dunk champ conspiring with the intended victim of a prank to help them turn the tables.
To coincide with the trailer debut, EW chatted with Griffin about Double Cross, Broad City, and Space Jam.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Why did you want to pull a Double Cross?
BLAKE GRIFFIN: I'm a sucker for that type of programming, just turn it on and get to laugh at the expense of others. But at the same time, [Double Cross] is light-hearted and getting back at people who are always the pranksters. I got involved a while back, developed it, and now it is what it is today. I'm excited for people to see the final product.
It's a good twist, pranking the pranksters, so what was it like executing that unique part of the classic prank show format? It's almost like you're pulling off two pranks at once.
It is, but it sort of lends itself to being captured better, just because both people are in on it, so you can have cameras everywhere, and if one person sees a camera they just think it's there for them. So you kind of get away with a little more, which is nice because on these shows it's all about getting the coverage, getting the reaction to all these pranks.
You don't have to say it, but I will: You're widely considered the funniest NBA player. But has being a prankster always been a part of your comedy? Or do you usually just like to watch pranks?
I would say both. I feel like as a kid, especially as a younger brother — and I think all my friends were younger brothers — we were always trying to pull stuff on our brothers. As I've gotten older, we've done some more, but for the most part, I just enjoy watching that content.
Are you often pranking your teammates?
Yeah, there are plenty of guys and old teammates. We've done stuff here and there, but nothing crazy elaborate. But you never know, I might start pranking teammates and friends soon.
While we don't want to spoil any pranks, do you have a favorite story that you can share from the show? I have to imagine some of these took some wild turns.
I feel like they did such a good job casting this and I had a favorite thing about every single prank. I think one of my favorite parts was just the reactions. Some people were [immediately] like "Oh, my God," some people took forever, some people left a little bit upset. [Laughs] Sitting in the control room and watching it all unfold was my favorite part. You're watching it in real time, you're seeing all the stuff from behind the scenes that maybe didn't make the cut but is still funny and necessary to make the prank work.
You've dipped your toes in a little bit of everything, whether it be roasts, cameos, film, and now this. So are you planning to pursue comedy and acting full-time whenever your basketball career is eventually over?
Obviously, basketball comes first and that's my main focus, but it's definitely something I've enjoyed getting into on the side. My biggest thing is making things that I would watch, and if I would watch then it's something I will pursue. So, I don't know. I've done [it] and have some experience here and there, but, like I said, my main focus is basketball.
How often do people bring up your Broad City appearance? You really bared it all.
[Laughs] For sure. That seems like it never dies. I was actually just talking to Ilana [Glazer] about that scene. She messaged me a video of it and was like, "Oh, my God, I can't believe we did this." It was crazy, but a lot of fun. Broad City has a pretty big following, so I always appreciate it when people bring it up.
LeBron James is getting ready to come out with Space Jam: A New Legacy, but you have the crown of being the guy Michael Jordan said would be his pick for star of a new Space Jam. That had to be pretty cool, right? MJ isn't one to just hand out compliments.
I'm a huge fan, obviously of his, but I was a huge fan of the original Space Jam, so that was pretty cool to hear. But that was LeBron's title to do with whatever he wanted. I'm really interested to see the new one.
Ever throw that MJ thing out at LeBron during a game? Like try to really get in his head?
[Laughs] Yeah, just start quoting lines from the original Space Jam at the free-throw line. Nah, I never did, but I probably should have. Hindsight is 20/20.
A couple of years ago I got really excited when I saw you and Kenya Barris were involved in developing a remake of White Men Can't Jump, which is one of my all-time favorites. Is that still in the works?
It's definitely still in the works. As far as when it will exactly be ready for people to see, I don't know. We've put a lot of time and thought into this. It's one of favorites as well and we want do the original justice. I just like the idea of seeing that title in today's landscape, in today's world of basketball and social media and everything moving so quickly. It's interesting to me and I'm excited about it.
Circling back to Double Cross, what would be your pitch to get people to check it out?
In a short amount of time you get to see such elaborate pranks. And you feel like the person doing the pranks in Double Cross is kind of the underdog, because they're always [the one] who has been pranked by these people. In one case, I won't say what the prank was, but one of the husbands in the show was bragging how he always pranks his wife and she can never prank him and he thinks he's pranking her, so it's that rooting for the underdog that I fell in love with on this show that I didn't know was going to be there from the beginning. It's just fun. We put a lot into it and I hope people like it.
Double Cross with Blake Griffin premieres March 19 on truTV.
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