Khaby Lame, the Senegalese-born Italian influencer who is the most-followed content creator on TikTok, is set to make his feature film debut playing a food delivery rider who is recruited by the CIA in an action-comedy that will take him around the world.
The English-language spy comedy working-titled “00Khaby” – and set in Italy, the U.S., Monte Carlo, Dubai and France’s Côte d’Azur, among other locations – will see Lame playing a JustEat rider who, after intersecting with a dissident scientist, is recruited by the CIA as bait to mislead enemy secret services. “While he runs away from arms traffickers and steals DNA samples, the clumsy secret agent must also deal with his jealous Italian Chinese girlfriend and her annoying little brother,” reads the film’s synopsis. “But in the end, thanks to a mix of cunning, luck and his unshakeable optimism, he will be able to foil no less than World War III.”
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The spy spoof that will bring Lame – who has 162 million followers on TikTok – to the big screen is being produced by Marco Belardi, who shepherded “Perfect Strangers,” Italy’s megahit concept dramedy that’s been remade in a dozen countries around the world. The “00Khaby” screenplay is being penned by Italian writers Nicola Guaglianone and Roberto Marchionni (aka Menotti), who co-wrote hit offbeat Italian superhero movie “They Call Me Jeeg.”
Belardi is headed to Los Angeles this week with Lame and the “00Khaby” screenplay “looking to mount an international production,” the producer said. Belardi added that he is in advanced talks with at least one prominent international director.
Meanwhile, Lame will be attending the Grammy Awards on Feb. 4 — possibly among the celebs handing out an award there — and will also be visibly present at the Super Bowl on Feb. 12 as part of a marketing campaign. In the U.S., Lame is also going to be honing his acting skills and perfecting his English.
“Acting has always been my dream, but I don’t want to improvise,” Lame said in a statement, adding: “This is why I am ready to delve deeper into my acting and English studies to perform at my best in this film.” Lame also pointed out that he is doing lots of physical training because “as I asked Marco Belardi, I don’t want to be replaced by a stuntman in the action scenes.”
Lame revealed that next month in L.A. he will meet a Hollywood star “whom I have always respected and I will certainly get some advice on how to move in front of the camera.” That star is believed to be Will Smith who, according to sources, has booked Lame to perform a cameo in an unspecified upcoming film.
The 23-year-old is a former factory worker in Italy who, after being laid off from his job in March 2020, launched a TikTok channel in which he performed absurdly comic skits that went wildly viral. In one, he simply unpeeled a banana with his hands in response to a video of a banana skin being intricately sliced off with a chef’s clever knife. His comedy bits rely on facial expressions and body language and often don’t involve speaking so that the humor is understood universally.
Lame’s first foray as an entertainment personality outside the TikTok space was being a juror last year on “Italia’s Got Talent,” which plays on Disney+. He also became a character in the battle-royale video empire “Fortnite” and has close ties to the fashion world thanks to a multi-year partnership with clothing brand Hugo Boss.
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