Malcolm D. Lee has reportedly replaced Terence Nance as director on the upcoming Warner Bros./Springhill Entertainment film Space Jam 2, according to Deadline. Malcolm D. Lee is known for his work on Girls Trip, the breakout film for Tiffany Haddish. He also directed Night School with Haddish and Kevin Hart.
According to the site, the departure was due to creative differences and “amicable.” Space Jam 2 will be produced by Black Panther director Ryan Coogler (Creed, Fruitvale Station). Filming is expected to begin during the NBA off-season in 2019.
Released in 1996, the original Space Jam (which still has a website) starred Michael Jordan and had the basketball teaming up with the Looney Tunes. In the film, Bugs Bunny has gotten himself and his Looney Tunes cohorts into a jam by facing off against the Nerdlucks, a grouchy gang of tiny space creatures who land on Earth. The Nerdlucks, dispatched by their boss, the ruthless, belligerent Swackhammer (voiced by Danny DeVito), intend to kidnap and export the Looney Tunes to Moron Mountain, Swackhammer’s failing theme park on the Nerdlucks’ boring planet.
Bugs has challenged the small, weak aliens to a fateful basketball tournament: if the Looney Tunes win, they’ll remain on Earth. But if the aliens win, Bugs and company are headed into the hands of Swackhammer. Michael Jordan has retired from the sport and begun to play baseball — with limited success. But after the Looney Tunes capture Jordan from a golf course, transport him to Looney Tunes Land and explain, in true Looney Tunes style, their predicament, he agrees to join their team.
The 1996 release also starred Billy West, Wayne Knight, and Theresa Randle. Space Jam 2 will hit theaters on July 16, 2021.