One would think that a movie centering around the partnership between Nike and a then NBA rookie known as Michael Jordan would be a straight-to-streaming affair, but apparently Amazon believes in the film so much that it’s actually going to be getting a theatrical release.
According to Deadline, Air, the Ben Affleck and Matt Damon film about how Nike landed Michael Jordan in the early ’80s, will be foregoing the straight to Prime premier and will instead be released in movie theaters globally. Warner Bros. will be handling the international distribution of the film. Originally set to debut on Amazon Prime, Air will be seeing a theatrical release weeks before the film ultimately hits Amazon Prime for sneaker aficionado subscribers to indulge in.
While Air isn’t exactly a film that people have been begging to be made or even asked for, it is one that’s peaked the interest of sneaker heads around the globe since it was announced last year. And Affleck and company have recruited some Hollywood heavyweights to partake in the production.
Air reveals the unbelievable game-changing partnership between then-rookie Michael Jordan and Nike’s fledgling basketball division, which revolutionized the world of sports and contemporary culture with the Air Jordan brand. The story follows the career-defining gamble of an unconventional team with everything on the line, the uncompromising vision of a mother who knows the worth of her son’s immense talent and the basketball phenom who would become the greatest of all time.
Damon plays maverick Nike executive Sonny Vaccaro and Affleck plays Nike co-founder Phil Knight with Jason Bateman as Rob Strasser, Chris Messina as David Falk, Matthew Maher as Peter Moore, Marlon Wayans as George Raveling, Chris Tucker as Howard White, Viola Davis as Deloris Jordan, Gustaf Skarsgård as Horst Dassler and Julius Tennon as James Jordan – among others. While Damon and Affleck starred in such movies together such as Good Will Hunting and Dogma, Air reps the first time that Affleck has directed his longtime friend.
Talk about an all-star cast. Keep in mind, Michael Jordan wasn’t only reluctant to sign with Nike back in 1984, but he actually wanted to sign a sneaker deal with adidas or Converse who were more popular than Nike at the time. What a time to be alive. It took all kinds of pushing and convincing to get Michael Jordan to even meet with Nike executives about a potential deal. Luckily, it happened. And we have all kinds of Air Jordans in our closets as a result. Now we get to see how history almost wasn’t made.
Ben Affleck for one is excited to show the world what he and Matt Damon have been cooking up.
“Matt and I are very excited for audiences to see Air and proud that it’s the first release from Artists Equity. The movie was an extraordinary experience where we had the honor of working with some of the best cast and crew in the business, all of whom brought passion, persistence, and creativity to a collective effort at recreating a remarkable and aspirational story.”
“I appreciate and value Jen Salke’s faith in our ability to execute on and deliver a movie we are proud of, as well as her and Sue Kroll’s incredible ongoing support of the film. Amazon Studios, Skydance, and Mandalay were all critical to getting this done, and the film couldn’t have been made without them. We value the steps it took on each of their parts to make it happen and want to thank them. This was the best creative and personal experience of our lives and we look forward to many more like it.”
You have to wonder if they’re going to be getting their own friends and family Air Jordan exclusives when it’s all said and done. Watch them be in “Bawsten” colors or something.
Air is set to hit theaters April 5, 2023. Will you be heading to theaters to see it or will you be waiting for it to hit Amazon Prime instead? Let us know in the comments section below.
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