15. Space Jam
Release Year: 1996
Directed By: Joe Pytka
Starring: Michael Jordan, Wayne Knight, Therese Randle, Bill Murray, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, Shawn Bradley, Patrick Ewing, Larry Johnson, Muggsy Bogues, Thom Barry, Penny Bae Bridges, Billy West, Dee Bradley Baker, Danny DeVito, Bob Bergen, Bill Farmer, Greg Burson, June Foray, Maurice La Marche, Paul Julian, Kath Soucie
Release Date: Sunday, March 1
If you’re a ’90s kid and you didn’t grow up watching Space Jam, you’re simply lying. Space Jam was the movie, even if you weren’t particularly a huge fan of either basketball or the Looney Tunes. Thankfully, a sequel will hit theaters next year and introduce a new generation to the hybrid universe of the Looney Tunes and basketball stars, which leaves us wondering which pop star will step up to cover the theme song. No matter what, it’s time to revisit a childhood staple, whether it holds up or not. Space Jam definitely ranks as one of March’s top new release movies.
Michael Jordan stars in Space Jam as… Michael Jordan, a fictionalized version of himself, a star basketball player. When evil alien theme park owner Swackhammer (Danny DeVito) searches for a new attraction for Moron Mountain, his gang lands on Earth to kidnap Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes. However, Bugs challenges Swackhammer’s gang to a basketball game to settle on their fate because sure. The aliens take over the championship-winning abilities of some of the all-time NBC greats, leading Bugs to lean on Michael Jordan for some basketball help.
Space Jam comes from director Joe Pytka, who also directed a number of Michael Jackson music videos and the movie Let It Ride. The film received mixed critical reception and holds a middling 43% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Regardless, Space Jam was a box office hitting and generational favorite, bringing in $230.4 million worldwide against an $80 million budget. After years of fits and starts for a sequel or spin-off, Space Jam 2 will hit theaters in July 2021 with LeBron James starring in the lead role with the Looney Tunes. Catch the original classic on Netflix this March.