'Space Jam 2' Finds New Director, Replaces Terence Nance With Malcolm D. Lee

When it comes to Space Jam 2Terence Nance is out and Malcolm D. Lee is in. Nance has departed the project due to creative differences, and now Girls Trip director Lee will take over to helm the sequel to the 1996 animated/live-action hybrid that people seem to love for some reason. LeBron James is starring in this follow-up, which will presumably see him teaming up with the Looney Tunes for more basketball-based hijinks.

Deadline broke the news regarding Malcolm D. Lee taking over as the Space Jam 2 director. Per their reporting, the departure of original director Terence Nance was "amicable, and essentially the filmmaker and the studio/producers had different takes on the creative vision for Space Jam 2." While I have no emotional investment in anything having to do with Space Jam, I will say it's a bit of a bummer that Nance is out. His hiring was unexpected, and made it seem as if Warner Bros. was willing to try something new with the material.

Malcolm D. Lee's credits include The Best ManThe Best Man Holiday, Barbershop: The Next CutGirls Trip, and Night SchoolGirls Trip was a huge hit, so Lee will no doubt deliver something that makes the studio and audiences happy.

There are no plot details for Space Jam 2 yet, but the original film involved Michael Jordan teaming up with Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes to challenge a bunch of cartoon aliens to a basketball game. The film has had a healthy shelf life, with many fans reflecting on it in a nostalgic way, blind to how bad the movie itself actually is.

This new Space Jam has been a dream project for LeBron James for years now, and the basketball superstar is set to both act in and produce the film; he's producing alongside Black Panther director Ryan CooglerDon Cheadle is also appearing in the film, presumably playing a human and not a Looney Tune. "The Space Jam collaboration is so much more than just me and the Looney Tunes getting together and doing this movie," James said previously. "It's so much bigger. I'd just love for kids to understand how empowered they can feel and how empowered they can be if they don't just give up on their dreams. And I think Ryan did that for a lot of people."

Space Jam 2 slams into theaters on July 16, 2021.