There’s still a lot we don’t know about the long-awaited sequel to Space Jam, the 1996 family classic that blended the well-worn tropes of a sports movie with some good old-fashioned cartoon shenanigans. The plot is still tightly under wraps, and aside from NBA star LeBron James, the cast is still a mystery. But here’s what we know so far.
The movie now has a release date!
Space Jam 2 will open on July 16, 2021. SpringHill Entertainment, the production company founded by LeBron James (who also stars in the movie) sent out a #SaveTheDate on Twitter:
July 16, 2021 🎥🏀🥕 #SaveTheDate pic.twitter.com/qV1Tnxuksd
There is some incredible talent behind the camera.
Not only is Space Jam 2 directed by Terence Nance, best known for creating HBO’s Random Acts of Flyness, but it’s also produced by none other than Ryan Coogler, director of Creed and the Oscar-nominated Marvel movie Black Panther. Justin Lin was originally attached to direct, but he left the project to work on the ninth and tenth instalments in the Fast & Furious franchise.
First OFFICIAL thing we’ve seen about ‘Space Jam 2’ is out: Terence Nance to direct, Ryan Coogler to produce and, obviously, stars LeBron James in the lead role. pic.twitter.com/Yl0P6mUl9R
Bugs will be back… and so will Daffy Duck.
The cast of the movie has yet to be announced, but we do know that Bugs Bunny will return, with voice actor Eric Bauza reprising the role—he is currently the only actor confirmed to be involved. IMDB, however, credits him as the voice for both Bugs and Daffy Duck, so it’s fair to assume both characters will be making an appearance, along with the rest of the Looney Tunes. Lola, Bugs’ love interest from the first movie, will also be coming back.
This isn’t LeBron James’s first movie.
Space Jam 2 will mark the first time that LeBron takes a starring role in a motion picture, but he’s no stranger to acting. He had a supporting role in the 2015 comedy Trainwreck, playing a hilarious fictional version of himself who somehow manages to make every conversation about himself, his basketball career, and the great city of Cleveland.
If Space Jam 2 goes down the same route as the original did with Michael Jordan, then LeBron will likely be doing the same again here and playing himself—so those scene-stealing moments in Trainwreck will have been good practice.
Filming will begin this summer.
Production on Space Jam 2 hasn’t even started yet, which is probably why so few details are available. Filming is slated to commence on June 17, during the NBA off season.
The sequel has almost happened a few times—and would have been very different.
Back in 2003, a Space Jam sequel was in the works which would have taken on the spy genre. Action star Jackie Chan was intended to be the lead, but he ended up leaving the project, and the script eventually became Looney Tunes: Back In Action. Joe Pytka, the director of the original Space Jam, has also said that he was once pitched a “really weird” sequel idea revolving around pro golfer Tiger Woods.
The original Space Jam was LeBron’s favorite movie.
Speaking to a reporter in May 2014, long before he was attached to star in the sequel, LeBron said: “I’ve always loved Space Jam. It was one of my favorite movies growing up. If I have the opportunity, it will be great… We’ll see what happens.”
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