The Script For SPACE JAM 2 Will Get a Rewrite From Ryan Coogler as NBA Stars Can't Join Due To Shoe Contracts
A few days ago it was reported that Space Jam 2 star and producer LeBron James was having problems enlisting an all-star team of NBA players to join the film.
THR now has an update on this report shedding some new light on what is going on and why the NBA players aren’t joining the film. Three players that producers for the film were trying to get on board were Stephen Curry, James Harden and Kevin Durant, but they likely won’t be able to join because of contracts that they have made with shoe companies. The report explains:
As to why shoes matter, Nike is essential to the Space Jam franchise. The 1996 first film was based on the "Hare Jordan" commercial directed by Joe Pytka, who also helmed the feature. That makes the involvement of Curry (Under Armour contract through 2024) and Harden (Adidas) nearly impossible, sources say. Durant, though a key member of Team Nike, is pursuing his own Hollywood efforts, including an Apple series, Swagger, based on his life.
So, since they aren’t able to fill out the cast with NBA stars, the script is being rewritten by Black Panther's Ryan Coogler and Searching's Sev Ohanian. The movie will now “rely less heavily on a Dream Team of hoops luminaries” and instead will focus on a family story arc, “with a yet-to-be-cast teen character named Dom as the second lead.”
Star Trek: Discovery's Sonequa Martin-Green was previously cast as LeBron's wife in the film. It’s also said that there’s a best friend character in the film named Malik, “modeled after Maverick Carter, LeBron's childhood buddy and producing partner in SpringHill.”
Production on the film is said to start shooting on June 17th and it’s set to hit theaters on July 16, 2021.