Space Jam 2 reportedly adds basketball stars Anthony Davis, Klay Thompson, Diana Taurasi, and more to its cast. A followup to the fan-favorite 1996 film, Space Jam, has been in development for a number of years, with NBA legend LeBron James attached as the lead. However, it was only recently when it started to really gain traction. In August 2018, filmmaker Terence Nance signed on to direct, and then Ryan Coogler came aboard as producer. A few months ago, Space Jam 2 secured a July 2021 release date.
The film allegedly begins shooting this summer, but there's still some pre-production work to be done. Namely, Nance and company need to round out the cast with other basketball players to appear alongside James. Back in April, there were reports that the Space Jam crew was having difficulty recruiting co-stars, with shoe endorsement contracts primarily to blame. But now, it would appear that hurdle has been cleared in a huge way.
According to Shams Charania, senior lead NBA insider for The Athletic, Space Jam 2 has drafted an all-star lineup. The ensemble is said to include Anthony Davis, Klay Thompson, Damian Lillard, Diana Taurasi, and Nneka Ogwumike (among others). Check out Charania's tweet in the space below:
Sources: Space Jam 2, starring LeBron James, is expected to feature key roles for Damian Lillard, Anthony Davis and Klay Thompson and WNBA stars Diana Taurasi and Nneka Ogwumike. Several more NBA and WNBA players, including Chiney Ogwumike, are expected to play roles in film.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 20, 2019
What's unknown right now is the nature of these roles. It's easy to look at this and say Davis, Thompson, and the rest will essentially be the next Monstars and have their powers stolen by villainous aliens who want to win a basketball game (much like Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, and others in the original film). However, Space Jam 2 plot details are still hard to come by. The latest update was that Coogler was rewriting the script to place more of an emphasis on the family dynamic between LeBron and his wife, played by Sonequa Martin-Green. With someone like Coogler so involved, it wouldn't be a stretch to say Space Jam 2 won't be a simple retread of its predecessor and look to bring something new to the table. It'll be interesting to see how everyone factors in; it's possible most of these will be cameos.
On a basketball level, the timing of this announcement is very interesting. The NBA world was recently rocked by the blockbuster trade that sent Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans to James' Los Angeles Lakers, so news of The Brow's casting in Space Jam is sure to get some laughs from sports fans. Additionally, Thompson is only a week removed from tearing his ACL in the 2019 NBA Finals, so he potentially could be limited in terms of what he can do physically. It's also nice to see Space Jam 2 make sure to feature some of the WNBA's best. Taurasi is one of the most accomplished basketball players of her generation, winning three NCAA championships and three WNBA titles in her illustrious career. Ogwumike may not have as much hardware as Taurasi, but she's a WNBA champion and MVP as well, so it'll be fun to see what they do onscreen.
Source: Shams Charania
- Space Jam 2 (2021) release date: Jul 16, 2021