This past weekend, Warner Bros. released the first official trailer for Space Jam: A New Legacy, the sequel to the original Space Jam starring Michael Jordan, to a rather mixed reception from fans.
While the trailer for the upcoming movie is serviceable, in a move that has been regarded as both bold and questionable by fans, keen-eyed viewers have noticed that it features a rather unusual cameo in the form of characters from Stanley Kubrick’s critically acclaimed A Clockwork Orange making a court side appearance next to a number of Warner IPs.
That’s right, the Droogs from A Clockwork Orange can be seen in the new trailer for Malcom D. Lee’s new Space Jam movie, at around the 2:22 minute mark. When consider how the Droogs commit a plethora of crimes in Stanley Kubrick’s cult-classic, including acts of ultra-violence and even rape, their inclusion is, to say the least, controversial.
Now, it is already bad enough that Space Jam: A New Legacy features a cameo of the Droogs, since this is supposed to be a kids movie, but what makes it worse is that this cameo comes from the same studio that made the decision to remove Pepe Le Pew from the movie for being a character that doesn’t agree with their woke standards.
Despite being a founding member of the Tune Squad in the original Space Jam and having filmed a scene in July of 2019 that involved himself and actress Greice Santo, Pepe Le Pew was removed from the final cut of the film after Malcom D. Lee took over from original director Terence Nance, ostensibly due to the same issues that found the cartoon skunk in the sights on cancel culture earlier this year.
Cutting Pepe Le Pew from the new Space Jam but deciding to feature the Droogs, even for a small cameo, only goes to show just how out of touch both Warner Bros. and Lee are.
To be fair, the trailer goes for Ready Player One levels of pop culture cameos and references, featuring appearances from a number of Warner Bros. properties, including Hannah Barbera characters like The Flintstones and Scooby-Doo, the Iron Giant, and even King Kong.
The big difference here is, however, that the other characters featured in the all-new trailer for Space Jam: A New Legacy are also from kid-friendly properties. Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange may be many things, but a kid-friendly movie is not one of them.
Pepe Le Pew is not allowed to be in Space Jam: A New Legacy, but Warner Bros. allows themselves to hypocritically shoves rapists like the Droogs into the movie in order to promote their own library of content. Even Pennywise, the evil clown from Stephen King’s horror novel IT, can be seen in the trailer for Malcom D. Lee’s kid-friendly Looney Tunes film. Yet Pepe Le Pew is deemed too offensive for younger audiences?
Which is it, Warner Bros.?
Additionally, following the release of the first trailer for Space Jam: A New Legacy, Warner Bros. Pictures also revealed, via Entertainment Weekly, that Spider-Man: Homecoming actor Zendaya had been cast in the role of Lola Bunny. In the original Space Jam, Lola Bunny was voiced by Kath Soucie.
In fact, she had been voicing the character until fairly recently, even appearing as part of the New Looney Tunes cast up until the show’s cancellation last year.
Let’s remember that Lee said Lola Bunny wasn’t politically correct and asserted that the image of a character like her wearing a crop top should not be in a movie made for kids.
“Lola was not politically correct…. This is a kids’ movie, why is she in a crop top? It just felt unnecessary, but at the same time there’s a long history of that in cartoons,” the director explained during an interview with Entertainment Weekly last month. “This is 2021. It’s important to reflect the authenticity of strong, capable female characters.”
So, for those keeping score, Lola Bunny is cancelled and Pepe Le Pew is cut from the movie, but Pennywise and the Droogs making an appearance in Space Jam: A New Legacy, a movie that director Malcom D. Lee acknowledges is made for kids, doesn’t seem to raise any red flags at Warner Bros. Pictures.
Will Warner Bros. address the controversy and remove the Droogs’ cameo from the movie? Are you excited for Space Jam: A New Legacy? Let us know in the comments section down below or on social media.