Kyrie Irving's old-man streetball persona is heading to the big screen in the first trailer for Uncle Drew. A few years back, Pepsi launched a new ad campaign starring the former Cleveland Cavaliers point guard. The idea was for Irving to suit up in old-man makeup and head to pick-up games posing as another player's uncle. Little did everyone in attendance know that it was actually one of the NBA's best point guards, until he started showing his skills on the court - much to surprise of the spectators.
The series spawned multiple followup commercials of Uncle Drew traveling around to various courts and humiliating real life people. They became so big that Lionsgate decided to develop a movie around the character. Irving was announced to star and several former NBA players lined up their parts, alongside some recognizable Hollywood faces. It all finally comes together with the first trailer.
Lionsgate released the first trailer for Uncle Drew today, and as seen at the top of this post, Uncle Drew hasn't lost a step. Directed by Charles Stone III based on a script by Jay Longino, it appears they've managed to recapture the fun of the digital series and developed a comeback tale in the process. Here is Uncle Drew's synopsis for more details on the story and cast:
After draining his life savings to enter a team in the Rucker Classic street ball tournament in Harlem, Dax (Lil Rel Howery) is dealt a series of unfortunate setbacks, including losing his team to his longtime rival (Nick Kroll). Desperate to win the tournament and the cash prize, Dax stumbles upon the man, the myth, the legend UNCLE DREW (NBA All-Star Kyrie Irving) and convinces him to return to the court one more time. The two men embark on a road trip to round up Drew's old basketball squad (Shaquille O’Neal, Chris Webber, Reggie Miller, Nate Robinson, and Lisa Leslie) and prove that a group of septuagenarians can still win the big one.
The Uncle Drew name should carry a bit of weight with it thanks to the previous content, but there's no telling what type of audience the movie will have in theaters. Even though the cast is primarily made up of NBA stars, many of them are known for their showmanship and are far from camera shy. Irving is at the top of his game playing with the Boston Celtics, while Shaq, Webber, and Miller routinely work together on NBA on TNT.
Having the ability to sell the movie on the names of the professional athletes attached should help Uncle Drew, but it also has a pretty good cast outside of them. Lil Rel Howery broke out big time early last year with Get Out, and this will be his first feature film since then. Meanwhile, Girls Trip breakout Tiffany Haddish will also make her return to big screen here. She may have a smaller role than Howery, but the trailer shows the interplay between the two a bit, so hopefully there's more of it in the movie.
Uncle Drew is schedule to hit theaters June 29, 2018.