The Broken City star – who has tried hard to put his own past as teenage heartthrob pseudonym Marky Mark far, far behind him – made the surprise announcement to Anderson Cooper on the latest episode of his talk show and explained how a random idea became reality.
“We were at Paramount pitching a different movie and we had the meeting and I said, ‘Hey, by the way what do you think about me and Justin Bieber in a like Color of Money-type of basketball, street hustler movie?’
“They bought it in the room in five seconds. So we developed the script, the studio loves it, his camp loves it,” the Boston-born actor revealed.
“He’s touring and I’m doing Transformers, Ted 2 and another movie so we will probably do it next year. If I don’t do it, we will do it with him and someone else and I’ll produce it,” he added.
When Cooper asked the seemingly obvious question of who would play the street hustler, Wahlberg replied: “I’m the hustler and he’s the kid I have to reluctantly mentor because he’s a very good basketball player.
“We got the idea when we saw him playing basketball in a celebrity thing and I play a lot of basketball so we thought it would make for an interesting movie,” explained Wahlberg, who as a Boston Celtics fan is going to have to put his personal team preference aside when he hits the court with Los Angeles Lakers follower Biebs.
“I think if he’s in the right project, I think he could be very good,” he continued.