This summer, the sequel to the iconic and now 25-year-old "Space Jam" featuring Michael Jordan will hit theaters. This time, the sequel revolves around NBA superstar LeBron James and will make some changes compared to the original. For the most part, the animated clique around Bugs Bunny and the others will appear unchanged, but individual characters have been adapted to the spirit of the times or have even been removed altogether. Bugs Bunny's girlfriend Lola, for example, who was quite revealing in the original, is to be visually toned down a bit. Director Malcolm D. Lee said it was particularly important not to sexualize the character, who is well known from children's films, in the way that was still the case in 1996. According to Lee, it is politically incorrect and inappropriate to put a crop top on an animated bunny; instead, in keeping with the spirit of the times, they want to promote the portrayal of self-confident female characters. More news regarding Lola states that she will be involved with the "Wonder Woman" universe in the new "Space Jam". As Lee confirms, she hangs out with Wonder Woman's Amazons, for example.
Furthermore, the decision was made to completely remove the skunk Pepé Le Pew, he said. This is in spite of the fact that a scene was already shot in the summer of 2019 under then-director Terence Nance, in which Pepé made a prominent appearance. As Deadline has found out, that scene involved a female bartender who is quite ensnared, touched and kissed by Pepé. After she successfully pushes him away, Pepé jokingly comments to his fellow cartoonists that a restraining order has already been filed against him from earlier days. After a New York Times columnist openly called Pepé an example of rape culture, those responsible at Warner thought the scene was too risky.
How do you view the whole thing? Are you happy about Lola's fresh look and the removal of Pepé, or do you feel the whole discussion is a bit overdone and you would like to see the old familiar characters back? Let us know in the comments! The expected release date of "Space Jam: A New Legacy" is July 16, 2021.