By: Lyle Alenstein
On November 10th, 1996, the original Space Jam was released starring one of the greatest athletes of all time: basketball player Michael Jordan. Just in case you didn’t know, his “Royal Airness” is a 6-time NBA champion, 6-time finals MVP, 5-time NBA MVP and a 14-time All-Star. The Warner Bros production featured many other famous basketball players in the film such as Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Charles Barkley. In addition to the professional hoopers, the movie included voices behind the characters of the famous Looney Tunes series, such Kath Soucie (Lola Bunny), Billy West (Bugs Bunny) and Dee Bradley Baker (Daffy Duck). The movie begins with Swackhammer, an evil alien theme park owner in need of a new attraction at his theme park Moron Mountain. He and his crew go to earth and capture the Looney Tunes characters, as they wanted them to be the new attraction. Bugs and company go on to challenge them to a basketball game to decide their fate. The aliens agree, but it was not long after that they stole the power of NBA players in order to get better. Due to this, Bugs asks the great Michael Jordan for help beating the aliens. The film has been lauded as a classic by sports fans everywhere, and its greatness resulted in widespread calls for a sequel.
Now 25 years later, Space Jam 2 is being released on July 16th, starring another one of the greatest athletes of all time: basketball player Lebron James. If you are unfamiliar with “The King”, he is a 4-time NBA champion, 4-time finals MVP, 4-time MVP, 17-time All-Star, as well as many more impressive feats. The cast of the movie is once again loaded with NBA stars such as Anthony Davis, Klay Thompson, Damian Lillard, as well as WNBA star Diana Taurasi. Other notable actors include Zendaya and Don Cheadle. As for information about the plot of the movie, the general public is left with the lone trailer that came out on April 3rd. From what the trailer displayed, Lebron and his son become trapped in a virtual world when captured by the algorithm AI-G Rhythm. In order to save his son, Lebron has to defeat the villain and his crew in a game of basketball. He then goes on to ask the Looney Tunes for help. The similarities from the original are made present in the trailer, which has kept the entire country waiting for the revamped version of Space Jam to come out. One of the most popular debates in the sports industry is whether Lebron James or Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time. While one can make an argument for both sides in terms of their playing and accolades, it will take a lot for Lebron and Space Jam 2 in order to upset the original version starring Michael.