Having topped the box office with a surprisingly hefty $32 million opening weekend, middling reviews clearly didn’t deter audiences from heading out to the theater to catch Space Jam: A New Legacy on the big screen, even though the long-awaited sequel debuted simultaneously on HBO Max.
Star LeBron James even felt the need to hop onto social media and dunk on the movie’s detractors, but as we’ve seen innumerable times in the past, you don’t have to be a good film to make a ton of money. Right up until the credits faded to black, fans of the original were hoping that Michael Jordan would drop by for a brief cameo to officially pass the torch to King James as the leading man of the franchise, but it never came to be.
We did get a Jordan cameo of sorts, except it was Black Panther star Michael B. who showed up in a case of mistaken identity, something that actually leaked a long while ago once Don Cheadle said there was indeed a Jordan cameo, but not how you expected it to happen. Director Malcolm D. Lee did reveal that he had an idea in mind for His Airness to show up in a meta stinger where Bugs Bunny showed him A New Legacy and asked for his thoughts, only for Jordan to reply by saying he took it personally, a riff on his famous quote from The Last Dance.
Whether an offer was actually made or not we can’t say for sure, but as majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats and head of a merchandising empire that’s made him a billionaire twice over, he’s both busy and rich enough to get away with missing out on Space Jam: A New Legacy.