Quincy Isaiah is one of the standout stars of Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, which premiered March 6 on HBO. Quincy stars as a young Magic Johnson in his breakthrough role. The series will chronicle the rise of the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s after signing Magic in 1979.
You’re probably wondering: who is Quincy Isaiah? Winning Time is going to make the 26-year-old a Hollywood star. HollywoodLife has rounded up 5 key things you need to know about Quincy.
1. Quincy plays Magic Johnson in ‘Winning Time.’
The series kicks off with the signing of Magic Johnson during the 1979 NBA Draft. Quincy effortlessly steps into the role of the young NBA star. There was a nationwide search to find the perfect actor to play Magic, and Quincy eventually earned the role. Quincy stars alongside Solomon Hughes, who plays Magic’s teammate Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
“The casting gods smiled down on us,” executive producer Rodney Barnes said to the Los Angeles Times about casting Winning Time’s key roles. “Quincy is from Michigan, so there’s already this understanding of who Magic is as a person. And he is a big personality — he looks like Magic and has that million-dollar smile.”
2. Quincy had dreams of playing Shaq.
Prior to playing the role of Magic, the actor thought his “dream role” was another Lakers legend. “I always thought my dream role was Shaq, but I ended up playing Magic — I was like, ‘This might be a better role!’” Quincy told Variety.
3. ‘Winning Time’ is Quincy’s TV debut.
Before Winning Time’s premiere, Quincy only had one acting credit to his name. He appeared in the 2018 short Corporate Coffee. Quincy considered quitting acting altogether before getting the role of Magic. “I was like, ‘I’m not getting anything,'” the actor told WZZM. “I had an agent, but I wasn’t booking anything. I was just like, ‘I’ll go to the military.'” He didn’t give up and nabbed the role of a lifetime.
4. Quincy hasn’t met Magic yet.
Even though Quincy is playing the Lakers icon, the actor has yet to meet Magic. “Well, I did not speak with him, but of course, Magic is an icon, and being from Michigan, it definitely factored into me knowing who he was and hearing these stories about who he was in college and knowing somebody who knew somebody that knew him. It was always like six degrees of separation,” Quincy revealed to The Gate.
5. Quincy is from Michigan.
Like Magic, Quincy hails from Michigan. He was born in Muskegon, Michigan. Quincy graduated from Michigan’s Kalamazoo College in 2017.