During the 46th Annual McDonald’s All-American Game earlier this week (March 28), Universal Pictures and Peacock premiered an exclusive first look 30-second spot of the new feature film, Shooting Stars, which is set to release exclusively on Peacock on June 2, 2023.
Shooting Stars, based on the book by LeBron James and the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Friday Night Lights, Buzz Bissinger, is the inspiring origin story of a basketball superhero, revealing how LeBron James and his childhood friends become the #1 high school team in the country, launching James’s breathtaking career as a four-time NBA Champion, two-time Olympic Gold Medalist and the NBA’s all-time leading scorer.
The film, directed by Emmy nominee Chris Robinson (Beats, Grown-ish), stars five-star high school small forward Marquis “Mookie” Cook, in his film debut, as a young LeBron James. Cook and LeBron James’s son, top-ranked combo guard Bronny James, played together on the West team in the boys’ All-American game. The McDonald’s All-American Games, benefitting Ronald McDonald House Charities and its network of local chapters, was held at the Toyota Center, home of the Houston Rockets, in Houston, Texas. The boys’ game aired on ESPN. LeBron James himself played in the same game exactly 20 years ago, when he was in high school.
Shooting Stars is set in the 1990s, where a young LeBron James (Cook) and his three best friends — Lil Dru (Caleb McLaughlin, Stranger Things), Willie McGee (Avery S. Wills, Jr., Swagger) and Sian Cotton (Khalil Everage, Cobra Kai)—declare themselves the “Fab Four,” after the famed Michigan Wolverines’ “Fab Five” of that era. From the moment we meet them, we realize this group of friends, under the guidance of coach Dru Joyce (Wood Harris; Creed franchise), is connected by more than basketball.
So, when the coach at the top basketball school in their district threatens to separate them by putting Lil Dru on junior varsity, the Fab Four decide to switch schools to be able to play varsity together, joining the team at a predominantly white Catholic school instead. The community takes this as an insult, but the boys’ dedication to each other is more important than anything else.
With their new coach (Dermot Mulroney; August: Osage County), a disgraced former college coach seeking redemption of his own, the boys, along with former rival and new teammate Romeo Travis (newcomer Sterling “Scoot” Henderson), will face battles not only on the court but in real life, in their quest to become national champs, and will rediscover that what matters most about the game is the people playing beside you.
The film’s screenplay is by Frank E. Flowers (Metro Manila) and Tony Rettenmaier (Space Jam: A New Legacy) & Juel Taylor (Creed II), based on the book by LeBron James and Buzz Bissinger.
The film is produced by Academy Award nominee Rachel Winter p.g.a. (Dallas Buyers Club), Spencer Beighley p.g.a. (executive producer Hustle), LeBron James, Maverick Carter (Space Jam: A New Legacy), Jamal Henderson (Executive Producer, The Shop) and Academy Award nominee and Emmy winner Terence Winter (Boardwalk Empire). The film is executive produced by Gretel Twombly.
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