The series follows the former NBA star as he opens his own eatery.
When a celebrity opens a restaurant, sometimes you wonder just how involved the famous name attached to the eatery actually is with the whole process. Plenty of well-known wealthy people invest in restaurants, a few others actually put their names on them, meaning you’d hope they were instrumental in the menu or at least the concept. For anyone wondering these very things about for NBA player Shaquille O’Neal’s new fried chicken restaurant, you’re in luck, as the seven-foot-one entrepreneur is putting his even bigger personality on display in an upcoming reality series, Big Chicken Shaq.
To let his fans enjoy the ride with him, O’Neal had a camera crew follow him throughout the process of getting his restaurant up and running. The eigh-episode series, which will air exclusively on Facebook Watch—the social networking site’s original video content vertical—takes viewers behind the scenes with Shaq, his business partners, his family, and his head chef, fellow former NBA star Charles Oakley. Here’s the trailer, posted to Facebook last week:
According to Eater Vegas, the restaurant is taking over a 2,800-square-foot space (4480 Paradise Rd #1200, Las Vegas, NV 89169) previously occupied by Origin India in Las Vegas’ Eastside neighborhood and is set to open this month. Apparently, the off-Strip location is intentional, as O’Neal wants his restaurant to serve as a destination and for the food to speak for itself. “Anybody can put chicken right next to Caesar’s Palace and get a lot of eyes, but we want to get ours the hard way—the real way. We want people to go off the strip to get something to eat,” O’Neal told USA Today’s For the Win. As for a season two, that could be a possibility as O’Neal also told USA Today he plans locations in Los Angeles and Atlanta. Big Chicken Shaq premieres online Saturday, October 6 on Facebook Watch.
Big Chicken isn't O’Neal’s first foray into the food business: He previously invested in Five Guys, owns a Krispy Kreme franchise, and worked with Oreo on a pop-up event.