NBC has given a full series order for Rise (formerly titled Drama High), the new TV drama from Hamilton producer Jeffrey Seller and Friday Night Lights’ Jason Katims. The series is inspired by the true story of high school theatre teacher Lou Volpe.
Volpe’s story and the program he built were documented in the 2013 book Drama High: The Incredible True Story of a Brilliant Teacher, a Struggling Town, and the Magic of Theater by Michael Sokolove.
Josh Radnor stars as Lou Mazzuchelli (the role inspired by Volpe) in a cast that also includes Rosie Perez, Marley Shelton, Damon J. Gillespie, Amy Forsyth, Rarmian Newton, Ted Sutherland, Casey Johnson, Taylor Richardson, Joe Tippett, and Shirley Rumierk.
Also among the cast is Auli’i Cravalho, the voice of Disney’s Moana, which featured songs by Hamilton creator and star Lin-Manuel Miranda.
Katims will write and executive produce. Mike Cahill will direct and executive produce. Michelle Lee, Seller and Flody Suarez also executive produce. Rise is produced by Universal Television, True Jack Productions and Seller Suarez Productions.