Movie of the Day: ‘BlackJack: The Jackie Ryan Story’ by Danny A.
“I am so excited to finally begin shooting this film. We have spent two years working on the movie behind the scenes and the last month prepping in New York for production and in casting mode.
To be able to finally start shooting and have our cast set is beyond exciting. We needed to find a slew of actors who can not only act but also play basketball in order to be able to shoot this film accurately to tell the story of Jackie Ryan the way I want to tell it.”
—Danny A. Abeckaser, Director
Today we’re shining a light on a the ultimate slashie: filmmaker/producer/actor Danny A. Abeckaser (a.k.a. Danny A). Danny A is an Israeli-born and Brooklyn-raised creative working in the film industry for the past 18 years.
We’re thrilled to announce the cast list for his newest project: BlackJack: The Jackie Ryan Story.
Danny A has built an impressive resume throughout his career, working with some of the greats of cinema. He’s highly selective when it comes to the projects he works on, and the quality shows throughout his work.
Blackjack: The Jackie Ryan Story is a feature film about street basketball legend Jackie Ryan. This latest feature by Abeckaser’s 2B Films began shooting this month in Brooklyn, New York. Directed and produced by Danny A. Abeckaser, the impressive cast features Greg Finley, Brandon Thomas Lee, Michael Rapaport, David Arquette, Ashley Greene, Bo Dietl, Sean Avery, Robert Davi, and more.
Based on an inspirational true-life story about Jackie Ryan, an American basketball player from Brooklyn, New York, Blackjack: The Jackie Ryan Story opens with Jackie as a hot-tempered, flamboyant, self-centered streetball legend. Jackie’s dreams of playing professional basketball seem out of reach after years of hard partying and neglect.
Jackie works construction alongside his overbearing father and his wise-cracking best friend Marty. After Jackie’s incredible talent is spotted at the famous West 4th basketball court, he is invited to try out for the NBA’s New Jersey Nets. This sets him on a path of redemption on which Jackie is forced to confront his inner demons and family, and begin to turn his life around.
Blackjack: The Jackie Ryan Story is produced under Abeckaser’s 2BFilms production company. Abeckaser worked closely with Jackie Ryan to make sure they wrote the story with accuracy, which was written by Antonio Macia. “Jackie has been extremely helpful in the coordination of this film and has been on set almost every day. He is so excited for our film to realistically portray his story,” notes Abeckaser.
Blackjack: The Jackie Ryan Story is Danny A.’s second project to feature David Arquette after his much anticipated feature film Mob Town, which he directs and costars in with Arquette as the lead along with PJ Byrne, Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Robert Davi, Jennifer Esposito, and more. Mob Town hits theaters December 13th via Saban Films.
Abeckaser’s first foray into cinema was 2010’s critically acclaimed Holy Rollers. Directed by Kevin Achs, Danny stars alongside Jesse Eisenberg and Justin Bartha in a story about a young Orthodox Jewish man who is lured into becoming an ecstasy dealer by a friend linked to an Israeli drug cartel.
Following Holy Rollers’s success, Danny went on to play Dino Lapron in The Iceman, appearing alongside Ray Liotta, Winona Ryder, Chris Evans, and James Franco.
Abeckaser continued momentum, writing and coproducing Club Life, loosely based on his own experiences as a New York nightclub power player. With several successful films under his belt, Danny was given the opportunity to work alongside the legendary Martin Scorsese on The Wolf of Wall Street.
Most recently, Abeckaser made his directorial debut in the film First We Take Brooklyn co-starring AnnaLynne McCord, Harvey Keitel, Charlotte McKinney, Edoardo Ballerini, Stevie Gutman, and Kathrine Narducci.
First We Take Brooklyn showcases the dark life faced by the lead character upon return to his hometown of Brooklyn and following an intense Israeli prison stint. The film premiered in NYC and LA, followed by national distribution via Sony Home Box Office in May 2018. First We Take Brooklyn had much success for an indie in theaters, with an extended box office run.
In 2018, Abeckaser brought the story of Robert Davi to screens as a producer. Davi’s Way documents Robert Davi’s attempts to recreate Frank Sinatra’s The Main Event concert that took place at Madison Square Garden in 1974.
Danny A’s next feature film, Mob Town, stars Abeckaser alongside David Arquette, Jennifer Esposito, PJ Byrne, Robert Davi, and Jamie-Lynn Sigler and will be released in December 2019. A small but pivotal role in The Irishman, the much anticipated Scorsese film debuting in October 2019, rounds out Abeckaser’s work for others’ projects this year.
Apart from acting, Danny A. runs both 2BFilms and 2BProductions, which have produced nine films to date. Film highlights include the documentaries Davi’s Way (starring Robert Davi) and The Last Shaman, feature films First We Take Brooklyn, Mob Town, The Curse of Sleeping Beauty, The Experimenter, and more…
We were hyped to get to speak to Danny A. about his life in the movies.
Credits for BlackJack: The Jackie Ryan Story
Ashley Greene (Twilight)
Brandon Thomas Lee (The Hills)
David Arquette (Scream)
Michael Rapaport (Justified)
Robert Davi (The Goonies)
Bo Dietl (Goodfellas)
Greg Finley (The Flash, The Secret Life of an American Teenager)
Tara Westwood (Detours)
Sean Avery (Dancing with the Stars)
James Madio (Band of Brothers)
Executive Producers: Isaac Gindi, David Gindi and Ron Rofe
Producers: Danny A. Abeckaser and Vincent Maggio
Director: Danny A. Abeckaser
Written by: Antonio Macia
Keep up with all the Danny A. news: follow this incredibly talented filmmaker on Instagram.