The world is still in mourning after the tragic and unexpected death of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven other passengers on a helicopter that crashed early in the morning on Sunday, January 26th. Bryant was revered for his skills and accomplishments on the basketball court, becoming one of the most revered NBA players after winning five championships with the Los Angeles Lakers. But after he retired from the league in 2016, he pivoted toward philanthropy and content creation, producing an Academy Award-winning short film that chronicled his love for the game with Dear Basketball.
Bryant was awarded with his Oscar Award in 2018 by the Star Wars legend Mark Hamill, and now the Luke Skywalker actor is breaking silence after the devastating passing of Bryant and other passengers who were killed in the helicopter crash.
Read on to see how Hamill paid tribute to the late basketball legend:
Kobe won the Best Animated Short #AcademyAward for writing & narrating #DearBasketball (music by #JohnWilliams)-It was his heartfelt love-letter to the game that made him a legend & a superstar. It was an honor to present him his much-deserved Oscar.#GoneTooSoon #RIPGiannaBryant pic.twitter.com/ka9raxRYhm— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) January 27, 2020
It's a rare feat for an NBA legend to also excel in the world of filmmaking, especially when they win Academy Awards for their work, but people who know Bryant are quick to admit that they aren't surprised by his accomplishments.
Even the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences paid tribute to Bryant after his death, recognizing his greatness off of the court.
Cover photo by Eric McCandless via Getty Images