LeBron James has had a tough couple of months. Rumors are running rampant about his likability in the Los Angeles Lakers locker room, he is missing the playoffs for the first time since 2005, and casting for Space Jam 2 isn't moving along as swimmingly as he had likely hoped. It appears that there is at least one major roadblock in the way of James recruiting the perfect team of Monstars for the Looney Tunes crossover sequel. According to the Hollywood Reporter, sneaker contracts ae getting in the way of certain players signing on to star in the film.
For those who might be unaware, James is a lifetime Nike athlete. He's not just any endorser though. He might be the Nike athlete. Recent reports indicate that Stephen Curry and James Harden, Under Armour and Adidas signature athletes, respectively, will not be joining the film due to their allegiances with the rivaling sportswear brands.
Footwear is a big part of 1996's Space Jam starring Michael Jordan. MJ can be seen hooping in the OG Air Jordan IX early on in the film. The "Space Jam" Air Jordan XI he wears to defeat the Monstars is one of the most popular Air Jordans of all time. Odds are, Nike will also be rolling out some pretty hefty promotional items for James to coincide with the film as well, which is why players signed to competitors like Curry and Harden should not be expected to appear alongside King James on the silver screen.
Still, some Nike guys are also reportedly staying away too. Giannis Antetokounmpo recently said he did not want to star in the film despite being one of the most popular young players in the NBA. Kevin Durant, another Nike signature athlete, also reportedly does not want to co-star in the movie because he is pursuing his own ventures in Hollywood. There is still some solid names that could be seen on screen. Could Kyrie Irving reunite with James on the big screen? Was Anthony Davis actually wearing a "That's All Folks!" T-shirt to hint at his potential involvement and not to hint he is leaving the New Orleans Pelicans? Everyone will have to wait and see.
Sources told the Hollywood Reporter that producer Ryan Coogler and Sev Ohanian are currently in the process of rewriting the original script. Rather than focus on a group of NBA All-Stars getting their skills taken by aliens, the plot will reportedly center more around James and his family.
Space Jam 2 is slated to start officially shooting this summer. Nike and Warner Bros. have not responded to Complex's request for comment regarding the rumored casting woes at this time.