It's been over two decades since Michael Jordan helped the Looney Tunes defeat the Monstars in a high-stakes game of basketball. But that wasn't all, folks! At long last, the first trailer for the long-awaited Space Jam sequel — dubbed A New Legacy — has arrived. LeBron James is the latest NBA All-Star to lace up his Nikes and help Warner Bros.' wacky roster of cartoon characters on the court. Produced by Ryan Coogler (Black Panther), the follow-up film is directed by Malcolm D. Lee (Girls Trip, Night School).
Going for a reverse Tron: Legacy scenario, A New Legacy finds "King" James sucked into a digital universe run by a rogue A.I. (Don Cheadle) in an effort to get his son, Dom (newcomer Cedric Joe), back. To do that, he'll need to partner up with the undisciplined Tune Squad and win a basketball match against the evil Goon Squad. Khris Davis (Judas and the Black Messiah), Sonequa Martin-Green (Star Trek: Discovery), Jeff Bergman (Looney Tunes Cartoons) and Eric Bauza (Looney Tunes Cartoons), Zendaya (Dune), and Gabriel Iglesias (UglyDolls) co-star. The latter two are set to voice Lola Bunny and Speedy Gonzales, respectively.
Take a swig of "Michael's Secret Stuff" and watch the trailer (featuring an updated version of (Quad City DJ's beloved Space Jam theme) below:
As you can see, the Merry Melodies crew (now with 3D/CG makeovers) won't be the only pop culture icons to grace the big screen in A New Legacy. Warner Bros. is upping the ante by opening up its entire catalogue of properties for a Ready Player One-esque mish-mash that brings together The Iron Giant, King Kong, Scooby-Doo, Batman, Game of Thrones, Hanna-Barbera, Mad Max, and more.
"It's not a sequel," James said in 2020, going on to describe the feature as "more of a family movie." He continued: "It's a parenting movie between me and my son, and me trying to demand my son to do something because I was taught that way growing up. Demand my son to play basketball. ... It's a tackling between me being a parent and supporting my son, and my son basically turning off at some point and me trying to regain that trust throughout the movie. Along with the great Bugs Bunny, and Lola, and Taz, and Tweety, and all of them."
Coogler also serves as an executive producer on A New Legacy, which co-stars Don Cheadle, Sonequa Martin-Green, and a roster of top NBA players. Speaking with SYFY WIRE last summer, Cheadle said the film was “a lot of fun to make. I think people are really going to be surprised at how different and original this new one is.”
The screenplay was penned by Juel Taylor & Tony Rettenmaier & Keenan Coogler & Terence Nance. James serves as a producer alongside Ryan Coogler, Maverick Carter, and Duncan Henderson. Nance, Sev Ohanian, Zinzi Coogler, Allison Abbate, Jesse Ehrman, Jamal Henderson, Spencer Beighley, Justin Lin, and Ivan Reitman (who produced the original) are executive producers.
To celebrate Easter, WB and Bugs are challenging viewers to find all the pop culture Easter eggs in the first trailer. Click here to get started. In addition, the official Space Jam website, famous for being untouched for almost 30 years, has received a modern update ahead of the follow-up's summer release. But don't worry, you can still access the OG landing page by clicking the '96 logo in the top right-hand corner of the page.
Space Jam: A New Legacy dribbles into theaters and onto HBO Max Friday, July 16. Check out a slew of character posters and production stills in the gallery below...