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Kobe Bryant would've done Space Jam 2 with LeBron James under one condition

Kobe Bryant would've taken part in Space Jam 2 in a very specific role.
Kobe Bryant would've done Space Jam 2 with LeBron James under one condition

Kobe declined the offer to be in front of the camera because he wanted to participate in the movie in a different capacity.

Space Jam 2 featured a ton of cameos from NBA stars. Fans were looking for their favorite player, curious to see what role they would be playing. Interestingly, Kobe Bryant was offered to make a cameo in the sports-fantasy film. However, he declined the offer to be in front of the camera because he wanted to participate in the movie in a different capacity.

Oscar winner

The sequel to 1996's "Space Jam" was hotly anticipated but was put on the backburner after Michael Jordan's hesitancy to return. The ball finally started rolling in 2014 when LeBron James agreed to star in the film.

In 2018, Kobe Bryant was asked if he was going to make a cameo in the upcoming film. Kobe said he would only join production if he was the director.

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"Being in front of the camera for me was something that never excited me. Never. ... I'll direct it," Bryant said, per Access.

Kobe further expounded: "But being in front of the camera is something that I would never [do]."

To recall, Kobe had just won the Academy Award for Best Animated Short at the 90th Academy Awards a year prior. Though he had appeared in various commercials and TV programs, winning the Oscar for his writing might have been a signal for Kobe: his talents for the silver screen lie in being behind the camera. And so, Bryant wanted to further hone his newfound skill by putting on a director's hat.

Fans want Bean

Even before LeBron James was considered for the lead role in Space Jam 2, Kobe was actually one of the fans' top choices. After all, since Kobe was a young stud, he had already been receiving comparisons with Michael Jordan. They called Kobe the Heir Apparent. In fans' eyes, Kobe was the only deserving basketball star to lead Space Jam.

In fact, when it was formally announced that it was James who would take on the mantle, there was an outrage on Twitter. Fans claimed that the Black Mamba should star alongside Bugs Bunny, not King James.

That was simply a case of not meant to be. Bryant was already carving his post-basketball life as some sort of a media mogul and artist. In those days when he appeared in front of the camera, his focus was solely on basketball, and so he promptly said yes to commercials and TV appearances. Perhaps this was just an act of courtesy on his behalf. After Kobe retired, he basically had the free reign to do whatever he wanted. He had the leverage and possessed the talent to do it. One can't help but wonder if Kobe ended up directing Space Jam 2. 


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