A longtime admirer of the late great Muhammad Ali, LeBron James generously donated $2.5 million in November to the boxing legend's exhibit at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. This was an extremely nice gesture by James and it "overwhelmed" Ali's wife. But while donating a large sum of money will do a lot to help honor Ali's legacy, James is planning on doing much more by producing a documentary on the fighter's life.
According to a press release from HBO, James and his business partner Maverick Carter will be executive producers on an untitled Muhammad Ali documentary that will be directed by Training Day's Antoine Fuqua. Both James and Carter created and operate SpringHill Entertainment, which has made various films and shows, like the STARZ comedy series Survivor's Remorse.
"It's tough to put into words how much it means to me to be a part of this project honoring the legacy and telling the extremely important story of the great Muhammad Ali," James said. "He transcended sports and used his platform to empower people, which paved the way for all athletes and people of every race and gender that came after him, myself included. It's important that his story continues for generations to come, and it's an honor for SpringHill Entertainment and me to be a part of this."
There is no release date for the documentary or a timeline of when it will begin filming. But the documentary will trace the ups and downs of Ali's life while "painting an intimate portrait of a man who, against all odds, dreamed and achieved the impossible, over and over again."
In the last several years, James has become more and more active in social activism and civil rights, and producing a documentary on Ali is just an extension of his belief system and ideals.
This is also yet another example of how James is more than just a basketball player and how important African American culture and education in general is to him. James' expression for culture and support of education is something that other superstar players don't necessarily openly do, which is why a player of his stature producing a documentary on such a legendary figure like Ali is refreshing and phenomenal to see.