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‘Space Jam 2:’ Lebron James to Star, Ryan Coogler to Produce

In his first project since the humongous success that was Black Panther, Ryan Coogler has announced that he will be the producer on Space Jam 2, which has Lebron James as its lead.

THR reports that Coogler will produce the Space Jam movie and Terence Nance – who created HBO’s Random Acts of Flyness and directed the experimental film The Oversimplification of Her Beauty – will direct. Production on the Warner Bros. film is tentatively slated for 2019, during the NBA offseason. It will be James’ first starring role after a successful turn as a supporting character in the 2015 Amy Schumer comedy Trainwreck. In a statement, James had this to say:

“I loved his vision (for Black Panther). So for Ryan to be able to bring that to kids, it’s amazing.”

The Space Jam has been long-rumored, with various directors and writers attached to the project over the years, including at one point Justin Lin, the action auteur behind the Fast & Furious movies. The movement on the movie coincides with James’ recent surge in Hollywood film and TV projects as a producer. Just last week, NBC and The CW announced separate shows in development with James’ SpringHill Entertainment.

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The original pulled in about $250 million worldwide and is still the highest grossing basketball movie of all time. It was chock full of cameos from NBA players (and the Warner Bros. Looney Toons). So it’s safe to assume the new iteration will include a plethora of basketball’s biggest stars, especially given James’ stature in the league. However, its unclear if Jordan will be among those featured.

“The Space Jam collaboration is so much more than just me and the Looney Tunes getting together and doing this movie. It’s so much bigger. I’d just love for kids to understand how empowered they can feel and how empowered they can be if they don’t just give up on their dreams. And I think Ryan did that for a lot of people.”

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