The first high five giver has logged on.
Setting their sights on one of the greatest moments in sports history—nay, world history—Jamie Lee Curtis and Ryan Murphy are readying their shoulders and opening their palms for a miniseries about the man who gave the first high five, former L.A. Dodger Glenn Burke.
Appearing on the Deadline’s Hero Nation podcast in support of Halloween Kills, Curtis announced the project, tentatively titled Outfielder. Like most of Murphy’s lately, the project will be a Netflix limited series. Robert O’Hara, best known as the Tony-nominated director for Slave Play, is writing and would direct the series.
“Ryan is producing a project I’ve been trying to get made as a producer for over ten years,” Jamie Lee Curtis said. “I’ve had the rights to a project of the life of the man who invented the High Five.”
Of course, that’s not the only part of the story that the show will likely dive into. Burke’s contributions to the world of sports extend well past his high five-giving abilities. He was also the first MLB player to come out as gay and publicly acknowledge it. Unfortunately, Burke said, doing so ended his career. “Prejudice drove me out of baseball sooner than I should have,” Burke told The New York Times. “But I wasn’t changing.”
Burke was 19-years old when he delivered what many believe is the first recorded high five on October 2, 1977. After teammate Dusty Baker hit his 30th home run during the final game of the regular season, Burke and Baker connected hands for the first time. As if to cement its cultural import, there was a 30 For 30 documentary on the moment.
Burke died of AIDs in 1995. Nearly 20 years later, he was one of the first inductees of the National Gay And Lesbian Sports Hall Of Fame.