While LeBron James has been keen on maintaining his cushy relationship with communist China, dictator Xi Jinping has yet to greenlight the NBA star’s new film “Space Jam: A New Legacy” for release.
“The film is carefully neutered to appeal to an apolitical global cinematic marketplace dominated by China,” Politico wrote last week. “Oddly, the ‘Space Jam’ sequel is not currently scheduled for a release in China.”
James stirred up controversy in 2019 when he rebuked Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey for supporting Hong Kong protests for freedom, saying, “We talk about this freedom of speech,” but sometimes “there are ramifications for the negative that can happen when you’re not thinking about others and you’re only thinking about yourself.”
The Lakers’ forward, 36, has consistently kowtowed to the genocidal regime to line his pockets. James has a $1 billion lifetime deal with Nike, whose CEO said just last month, “Nike is a brand that is of China and for China.” Nike also sources cotton from the country that gathers more than 80 percent from where Uyghur Muslims are held in slave camps. Meanwhile, the NBA also rakes in billions of dollars from China, while players maintain foreign endorsements that members of Congress have criticized.
Regardless of James’ financial ties to the corrupt regime, there is no scheduled release date for the new “Space Jam” in China. Should China not release the film at all, James would forfeit additional profits, given that he is the co-founder of the global production group SpringHill Company. Warner Bros. stands to lose millions of dollars if the film can’t extend into the Chinese market.
“Despite LeBron James shutting up & dribbling for Chairman Xi, China still won’t allow Space Jam 2 to air, meaning the movie is likely to lose several hundred million dollars,” Outkick founder Clay Travis tweeted Wednesday. “Should be a massive story. LeBron bent the knee & China still spurned him. Yet media isn’t covering it.”
Despite LeBron James shutting up & dribbling for Chairman Xi, China still won’t allow Space Jam 2 to air, meaning the movie is likely to lose several hundred million dollars. Should be a massive story. LeBron bent the knee & China still spurned him. Yet media isn’t covering it.
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) July 21, 2021
Critics have also slammed the film, which follows the widely-acclaimed 1996 version with basketball legend Michael Jordan. The second “Space Jam” has a 31 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, dampened by left-leaning critics slamming it from the New Yorker, Rolling Stone, indieWire, and others.
“It feels less like a movie than a sales pitch, where Warner Bros. really wants to remind you that it owns everything from Casablanca to Game of Thrones,” Angie Han of FilmWeek described.
“But the movie’s founding joke, the heart of its premise, is a little bittersweet,” K. Austin Collins of Rolling Stone wrote. “Or better yet, sweet and sour. It’s a classic example of what happens when the powerful butt of a joke — in this case, Warner Brothers, but really, the Hollywood studio system of the 21st Century writ large — takes that joke, internalizes it, and passes it off as a form of awareness.”
James faced backlash in April upon tweeting “YOU’RE NEXT” regarding a police officer who saved a minority teen from being stabbed to death, while not maintaining such harsh rhetoric for China and its murderous regime.
Choose your fighter pic.twitter.com/6pkRxbm1PM
— Kylee Zempel (@kyleezempel) April 23, 2021