After the Dallas Mavericks triumphed over the Miami Heat this week, many fans (including this writer) have been vindicated for their criticism of LeBron James‘ decision to turn his back on his hometown of Cleveland. The onslaught from these very critics seems to be as strong now as it’s ever been with Lebron surely just looking for a hole to hide in. One potential distraction for the star, though, as his gestating acting career looks like have fallen through once again.
The Universal and Imagine sports-comedy “Ballers” was due to shoot last September with LeBron in a starring role but was delayed to accommodate his over-hyped conundrum about leaving the Cavaliers. Variety now reports that the project is once again delayed with executive producer Michael Rosenberg revealing that, despite director Malcolm D. Lee‘s sentiments, they “are not shooting this summer [either].”
Lee of “Undercover Brother” fame is also said to be working on a new draft of the screenplay, which follows the story of “five guys who attend the LeBron James Adult Basketball Camp in Las Vegas, but end up dragging the phenom into their myriad life issues.” Script was originally written by Babaloo Mandel and Lowell Ganz with re-writes by Peter Steinfeld.
While the whole thing definitely smells of another “Kazaam” or “Space Jam,” there are some fairly heavy-hitters involved in the project with Brian Grazer, Kim Rothan and Rosenberg producing. Imagine head Grazer added that the Miami star had “impressed him in commercials and his 2007 hosting turn on ‘Saturday Night Live,'” and that “an A-list comedic cast to ensure his feature debut would be successful.” More material for LeBron critics coming up? We think so, but with no imminent start date possible until next summer, it could very well fall by the wayside by then.
Also, kudos to Jeff Sneider for the audacity to rival sports-callers with his own corny closing line, writing that “one thing is for sure, ‘Ballers’ getting off the ground is no slam-dunk.”