Allen Maldonado has waited for this opportunity for a long time. In September, the comedy series Sneakerheads made its debut on Netflix. It's the first time Maldonado is the lead actor. Over the years, Maldonado has played supporting roles in films such as The Equalizer, Live Free or Die Hard, Straight Outta Compton and the Netflix film Project Power. He's also played supporting roles in various TV series, including You’re the Worst, Black-ish and The Last O.G. Popculture.com recently caught up with Maldonado about his news series and how he’s been waiting for something like this his entire career.
“I've been acting in the business for a long time and I’ve been praying for this opportunity to get to a place where my first time out as a lead and people are saying its their favorite show,” Maldonado said exclusively to Popculture.com. “That’s all that you ask for. When you perform and when you act, the gratification of people enjoying your work and watching you do what you love is on another level.”
In Sneakerheads, Maldonado plays Devin, a former sneakerhead turned stay-at-home dad who gets back in the game only to find himself down $5,000 after falling for a get-rich-quick scheme from Bobby, one of Devin's old friends. To get his money back (and possibly more) Devin recruits a group of other shoe lovers to get the "Zeroes" which are very hard-to-find kicks.
"Being the first is a very special category to find yourself in," Maldonado said when talking about the series being the first of its kind. "When the project presented itself to me and the idea of executing a show about sneaker culture, I was ready to embrace that. It was a project that I felt the world would embrace a show about sneakers just because it’s such a big culture worldwide. It's a universal language. It brings so many diverse people together. Similar to sports, it has that same type of co-following. That’s been the results of the success that's it’s been receiving.”
The first season of Sneakerheads is six-episodes long with each episode lasting no more than 25 minutes. When it was released, the show made its way to Netflix’s Top 10 list, which Maldonado said was “amazing.” Sneakerheads also stars Andrew Bachelor Jearnest Corchado, Matthew Josten, Yaani King Mondschein, Justin Lee, and Aja Evans. There a number of cameo appearances, including former NBA stars Paul Pierce and Barron Davis, actor Michael Rappoport and comedian Lil Rel Howery.
"It's incredible to have those individuals part of this show," Maldonado said when talking about the cameo appearances. "Shoutout to everybody that showed love to the sneaker culture. I'm a fan of these individuals. To have them be a part of a project that we were shooting was just an incredible honor and it's great to share the screen and share the craziness that we have in Sneakerheads.”
The way that the first season of Sneakerheads ended opens the door for the crew returning for Season 2. As of now, no plans for a second season have been made, but Maldonado believes it can happen as long as fans continue to watch the show. "God willing we get that phone call," Maldonado said. "This is the entertainment business and you never know. I just encourage more people to watch the show, keep demanding it and I'm sure they'll make it happen."