Don Cheadle Confirms Space Jam 2 Role

As production was ongoing on the long awaited Space Jam 2 last year one casting announcement came as a bit of a surprise, when Marvel Cinematic Universe alum Don Cheadle was tapped for what was billed as a "Secret role" in the film. Given the first movie, and seemingly the second, was famous for having actors and real-life figures appear as themselves, it wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility to think that Cheadle was playing a version of himself in the film. Turns out, he's not appearing as himself but in fact an original character, which very much still remains a secret.

"No, I'm not playing myself," Cheadle said at today's Television Critics Association. "I actually can't tell you what I'm playing."

The use of "What" is curious here, could Cheadle be playing a non-human character? Again, this wouldn't be out of the ordinary with Space Jam with the 1996 original featuring countless Looney Tunes characters and the alien run theme park Moron Mountain. Perhaps Cheadle is lending his voice to a character, but we may not find out what part he plays until the first trailer debuts.

LeBron James will star in the new movie, taking over Michael Jordan's role from the original Space Jam. That parallel couldn't have been more on the nose, considering James and Jordan are the two men at the forefront of every "greatest basketball player of all time" debate. After moving to Los Angeles to play for the Lakers, James has assembled an all-star roster of players to join him in the Space Jam sequel.

NBA stars Anthony Davis (James' new teammate in L.A.), Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors, Chris Paul of the Houston Rockets, and Damian Lillard of the Portland Trailblazers have all reportedly joined the cast of Space Jam 2, as have WNBA stars Diana Taurasi and sisters Chiney and Nneka Ogwumike. According to reports, there will likely be several other players appearing in the movie.

"The Space Jam collaboration is so much more than just me and the Looney Tunes getting together and doing this movie," LeBron previously told THR. "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."

Filmmaker Malcolm D. Lee stepped behind the camera for Space Jam 2 which is scheduled to arrive in theaters on July 16, 2021.

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Additional reporting by Scott Huver.