Anticipated “Space Jam: A New Legacy” Hits Theaters

Photo posted by @spacejammovie on Instagram

With game day right around the corner, Penn Staters are bugging out with excitement over the idea of a full stadium, chicken baskets and of course football. Whether sitting along the football field in the fall or courtside at a basketball game in the winter ­— VALLEY knows a thing or two about the appreciation of sporting events.

The newest release from Warner Bros, “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” is a direct comparison to how seriously Penn Staters take their game days – as does the Tune Squad with equal parts sport and fun along the way.

Tweet posted by @Spacejammovie on Twitter

This stand-alone sequel returns with all the Looney Tunes stars from our childhood that we know and love as well as basketball star LeBron James filling the shoes of previous main character Michael Jordan with all the same looney adventures as the first original film.  

Hitting theaters and premiering on HBO Max July 16, 2021, LeBron James will head on a journey with the Looney Tunes characters to play in a basketball game match against a champion team in order to save his son, played by Cedric Joe, who is trapped in a digital space by villain Al G Rhythm, played by Don Cheadle. With voice actors such as Zendaya playing Lola Bunny, Jeff Bergman and Eric Bauza playing Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and other iconic roles.

The original “Space Jam” starring Michael Jordan was a huge moment for pop culture when the film was released in 1996 combining live-action sport and cartoon animation and became one of the highest-grossing basketball game films of all time.

Modern Takes

From the film’s soundtrack to the debut of an extensive collaborative list of movie merchandise, fans were obsessed with the basketball-playing Looney Tunes versus space monster-fighting film. This continues on for “Space Jam:  A New Legacy” as they have partnered with brands such as Princess Polly, Forever 21 and Nike.  

The sequel’s soundtrack includes large artists like Lil Baby, Chance the Rapper, SZA, and even the Jonas Brothers. Lil Uzi Vert also gives his own rendition of the Technotronic’s “Pump Up The Jam,” which was featured in the first movie.

Character Redirection

Rumors of a sequel were overheard for over two decades until 2014 when Warner Bros finally announced that all their hopes for a second movie would come to life with a sequel starring LeBron James.

This new 2021 film considered all the societal advances that have occurred since the original “Space Jam” film’s debut and made changes accordingly.

Director Malcolm D. Lee wanted to go in a different direction with the second “Space Jam” making it a stand-alone film rather than a direct sequel – hence “Space Jam: A New Legacy.” First Lee wanted to do this by creating a plotline that was more appealing to a younger audience as the film is rated PG.

Introduced in the first “Space Jam” was Lola Bunny, an iconic character that was loved so much we would see her for years later in other films and television shows. Yet, Lee felt that he wanted to remold her character to make it more appropriate for younger audiences watching.

Tweet posted by @Spacejammovie on Twitter

He told USA TODAY, “The original Lola bunny was a great character. But she had very human characteristics that I felt objectified her. We wanted to go a different direction, particularly thinking about the rise of female basketball players and how little girls look up to them,” says Lee. “I wanted her depiction to be a leader, feminine and strong. But less objectified, less sexualized. It was the right call. Even if a lot of people aren’t going to like it. For a family film, this was a good revision for Lola Bunny.”

With all the hype surrounding the “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” VALLEY is excited to finally watch the highly anticipated new release on July 16.

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