With so much attention being paid to a possible Warner Brothers reboot of the 1996 film Space Jam, many people have forgotten the initial effort to reboot the series. Here to discuss that forgotten moment in film history is Boris Diaw, a member of the San Antonio Spurs and the Alfred Hitchcock of French cinema.
Bryan Harvey: So what are your thoughts on the second Space Jam and the possibility of LeBron James reprising the Michael Jordan role?
Boris Diaw: First, don’t you mean the third Space Jam?
BH: I figured we’d work our way to that controversy, but what do you think about LeBron being in the film instead of MJ?
BD: I don’t know. Will LeBron be playing Michael in the movie? Or will he be playing himself the way Michael played himself? You know, in my version of Space Jam, the true sequel in the first phase of the Space Jam series, I cast Tim Duncan as both himself and Michael Jordan and players to be named later.
BH: What do you mean by first phase?
BD: You know, like how the Marvel Universe unfurls itself in waves. After the Space Jam series stalled, I told Stan Lee he could borrow the idea of cinematic phases in order to tease the audience into thinking there’s an end game. But, as we all know, there’s rarely an end game. There’s always a Kawhi or a LaMarcus from which to draw inspiration.
BH: Yeah, I’ll probably ask you about that or whatever, but what do you think of LeBron being in the new Space Jame and not MJ?
BD: Have you seen my National Geographic work? I recently wrote a children’s book. I like to go on safaris. When I was on my last safari, I saw an ancient hippo—the patriarch of all patriarchs—raise its tusked face out of a great river. I could not tell if the hippo’s face was wet or if it was crying, but it looked like all those MJ memes I see on Twitter. I imagine some of us, but not all of us will feel like that meme, which is to feel like the hippo. What did you think of Tim Duncan playing the MJ role?
BH: Well, I’ll be honest, I’m not sure I ever realized Duncan was ever playing anyone other than himself?
BD: Timmy is always someone else.
BH: What does that mean? Do you mean he’s like a blank canvas?
BD: Sort of. But he’s more like a mirror facing a blank canvas.
BH: Well, who’s the blank canvas then?
BD: That would be Pop. Of course, when I first got to San Antonio, I did not realize Pop was a blank canvas, but then he gave me my first opportunity in a long time to truly express myself.
BH: And you feel that self-expression was reflected by Duncan?
BD: No, Timmy was still reflecting the blank canvas.
BH: Who did you cast as the Monstars again?
BD: Did you even see my film? The Spurs were the Monstars, but they were also the Tune Squad. The battle was always contained within the system. Could it adapt? Could it not? Does the smallest tremor topple monolithic structures? I really am questioning not only did you understand the film but whether or not you even saw it.
BH: Of course I saw your version of Space Jam.
BD: Then who was my Bill Murray?
BH: Um, didn’t you use one of the Wilson brothers? Like didn’t you use Owen Wilson? Wasn’t it filmed during your Wes Anderson phase?
BD: If anything, Wes Anderson has mimicked me. And why would I use Owen Wilson?
BH: Was it Luke then?
BD: No, using Luke Wilson would be like signing Jimmer Fredette to play shooting guard.
BH: Ah, it was a trick question. You used Bill Murray as Bill Murray as Bill Murray.
BD: That would have been smart, but no. I used Eva Longoria as Tony Parker as Eva Longoria.
BH: But she’s not a comedian. Did anyone find that funny?
BD: The joke’s on you. My Space Jam actually took place in outer space, which means there was no sound. If and when she told her jokes, you could not and would not have heard them. The punchline was silence, just as it will be for all of us when the world slips into the jaws of the mighty hippo.
BH: That sounds depressing. Did you really make a sequel to Space Jam?
BD: Actually, I made a trilogy, but the studios whittled it down like a bar of Ivory soap. When it became shaped like a boat, I felt it no longer belonged to me, but to the passengers. Didn’t you see it? Didn’t you feel like a passenger on a tiny soap boat?
BH: Was it in French?
BD: I just told you it was a silent film.
BH: Yeah, I guess you did.
BD: But I would love to have lived in such a world.
BH: Would it star Pepe le Pew or LeBron James?
BD: Like the hippo raising its head from a mighty river, you just couldn’t resist.
BH: I really couldn’t.