×

‘Girls Trip’ Director Malcolm D. Lee Boards ‘Space Jam 2’

“Girls Trip” director Malcolm D. Lee is replacing Terence Nance as director of “Space Jam 2,” starring LeBron James, for Warner Bros. and James’ SpringHill Entertainment.

The departure of Nance, creator of the HBO show “Random Acts of Flyness,” was due to differing visions between Nance and the producers for “Space Jam 2.” Production had been under way before the studio announced Tuesday that Lee had come on board.

Warner Bros. has set a July 16, 2021, date for its live-action/animated sports comedy. Lee’s recent credits include “Girls Trip,” “Night School” and “Barbershop: The Final Cut.”

Don Cheadle is also starring in “Space Jam 2.” The movie marks James’ first major acting role. He played himself in the 2015 Amy Schumer-Bill Hader comedy “Trainwreck.”

Rumors of a “Space Jam” follow-up first emerged in 2015 when James and his company, SpringHill Entertainment, signed a deal with Warner Bros. Justin Lin was in talks to direct in 2016, but that deal did not go through. Lin is an executive producer on the movie.

Michael Jordan teamed up with Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes characters in 1996’s “Space Jam,” which grossed $230 million worldwide. The cast included NBA stars Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, and Patrick Ewing, and the story took place during the time between Jordan’s initial retirement from the NBA in 1993 and his comeback in 1995. Jordan was enlisted by Bugs Bunny and friends to help them win a basketball match against a group of aliens.

“Black Panther” director Ryan Coogler came on board as a producer on the “Space Jam” sequel last year and the state of California has made a $21.8 million conditional tax credit allocation for the project.

Lee is repped by Paradigm and Del, Shaw, Moonves, Tanaka, Finkelstein & Lezcano. The news was first reported by Deadline.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Gerard Schurmann, Film and TV Composer,

    Gerard Schurmann, Film and TV Composer, Dies at 96

    Gerard Schurmann, whose 1960s film scores included “The Bedford Incident” and “Dr. Syn, Alias the Scarecrow” but who also composed extensively for the concert hall, died March 24 at his home in the Hollywood Hills. The cause of death was not announced; he was 96. Schurmann’s death was announced by his music publisher, Novello & [...]

  • Rita And Tom Hanks Coronavirus

    Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson Return to U.S. After Coronavirus Diagnosis in Australia

    Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson are back home in the U.S. after they revealed they had contracted coronavirus and were quarantined in Australia. Hanks gave an update on Twitter Saturday morning, thanking everyone who had helped them in Australia and assuring people that they are still isolating themselves in the U.S. “Hey, folks…We’re home now [...]

  • Film Comment Magazine Goes on Hiatus

    Film Comment Magazine to Go on Hiatus as Film at Lincoln Center Lays Off Half of Staff

    Many companies are being financially impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, and the Film at Lincoln Center is the latest organization to have to lay off employees and pause some of their operations. On Friday, executive director Lesli Klainberg released a memo announcing that the center had to furlough or lay off about half of its [...]

  • "Birds of Prey" egg sandwich

    'Birds of Prey' Actor Bruno Oliver Recreates Harley Quinn's Famous Sandwich

    When actor Bruno Oliver booked the role of short order cook Sal in “Birds of Prey: (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn),” he had no idea how significant Sal and his breakfast sandwich were to the story. “You couldn’t tell from the audition necessarily and as actors, we always worry about our scenes [...]

  • Minyan

    'Minyan': Film Review

    Best known for the unexpectedly soul-shattering San Francisco suicide doc “The Bridge,” indie filmmaker Eric Steel came out and came of age in 1980s New York at a moment just before AIDS devastated the city’s gay community. Such timing must have been surreal, to assume something so liberating about one’s own identity, only to watch [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content