Julian Edelman plots Hollywood takeover

Julian Edelman (right) and Assaf Swissa attend the premiere of their Showtime documentary “100%.”
Julian Edelman (right) and Assaf Swissa attend the premiere of their Showtime documentary “100%.”Showtime

Next stop, Hollywood.

In the past, Julian Edelman’s made no secret of his affection for show business. Just look at the Patriots wide receiver’s YouTube channel, where he commits to sincerely silly send-ups of TV genres, like smoothie cooking show “Smoothie Tyme” and more recent film-review program “Movie Tyme.”

But the Super Bowl MVP has his sights set much higher. Two months ago, Edelman launched Coast Productions with Boston University-bred executive Assaf Swissa, who’s worked with athletes like Steph Curry, David Ortiz, and Kyrie Irving through his Boston-based ad agency Superdigital.

In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the pair — who just collaborated on Showtime documentary “100%,” about Edelman’s path from ACL injury to championship victory — teased Coast’s future plans, which include a TV series based on Edelman’s life.


“It’s going to be loosely based off the early part of my career,” Edelman explained of the series, which Coast will begin shopping around Hollywood this fall.

“Everyone thinks that NFL football players are like the [HBO] show “Ballers,” when in fact, probably 65 to 75 percent of the guys are scratching for a roster spot,” he continued. “They are not known. We all have helmets. There are only a handful of guys that are known.”

The series, Edelman said, could take a more realistic look at life for the NFL’s freshman class. “When I was a rookie, Tom Brady was talking about taking a helicopter to the Hamptons with his supermodel wife while I’m about to go to [an Irish pub near the stadium] and not be recognized,” he added. “You know what I mean?”

Edelman and Swissa are personally bankrolling Coast Productions, part of a commitment to ensuring its eventual output feels completely their own. Another upcoming project is a romantic comedy set in the world of football. Edelman won’t star, but he expects to produce and perhaps take on a supporting role. “I love rom-coms,” said Edelman. “Does that make me weird? I don’t know.”


In Coast’s offices — next to a Boston/New England Emmy that Swissa won in 2015 for writing shortform Edelman draft report “Only Two Things You Can Do” — sits a framed list the two abide by. “The Golden Rules of Social Media,” it outlines, can be separated into two points: “1. Know Thyself. 2. Know Thy Audience.”

So far, Edelman and Swissa have proven savvy businessmen. Their Showtime doc was well-received, with the network’s sports division’s president, Stephen Espinoza, calling to deliver good news about its performance.

There have also been calls from celebrities, wishing the pair well in their new venture. One came in from Mark Wahlberg who, like Edelman, started out as something of a scrappy nobody before making his own luck.

“He said he was excited for me,” said Edelman. “We’ve been friends for a number of years now. He said, ‘If you want to do something, go out and do it yourself.’”

Isaac Feldberg can be reached by email at isaac.feldberg@globe.com, or on Twitter at @isaacfeldberg.