The Weeknd to Star In and Write HBO Drama Series With ‘Euphoria’ Creator

The Weeknd poses backstage for the 2021 Billboard Music Awards
Rich Fury/Getty Images for dcp

The Weeknd is working on a television series for HBO, which he is set to star in as well as co-write.

As first reported by Variety, the series, currently titled The Idol, centers around a female pop singer who becomes romantically involved with an enigmatic Los Angeles club owner who is also the leader of a secret cult.

The Grammy Award-winning artist will co-write and executive produce The Idol alongside his creative producer Reza Fahim and Euphoria creator Sam Levinson. In addition, Joseph Epstein (Health and Wellness) will serve as showrunner and be part of the show’s writing team along with Mary Laws (Preacher, Succession).

This isn’t the first time The Weeknd (real name Abel Tesfaye) has ventured into television. In 2020, he co-wrote an episode of the TBS animated comedy American Dad with the show’s producer Joel Hurwitz. And he also has acting experience, having played a version of himself opposite Adam Sandler in the critically lauded feature Uncut Gems.

Earlier this year, the “Blinding Lights” hitmaker performed at the Super Bowl LV halftime show. After Hours, his most recent album, was released in March 2020 and has accumulated 7 billion global audio and video streams. Despite the record’s critical and commercial success, The Weeknd was snubbed at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards, sparking controversy amongst fans and critics.

“The Grammys remain corrupt. You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency…,” the Canadian singer tweeted following the snub. He would later tell Billboard, “Look, I personally don’t care anymore. I have three Grammys, which mean nothing to me now, obviously […] It’s not like, ‘Oh, I want the Grammy!’ It’s just that this happened, and I’m down to get in front of the fire, as long as it never happens again. I suck at giving speeches anyways. Forget awards shows.”