If you’re a heavy Twitter user, every spring for the past half decade or so now, in the midst of the NBA Playoffs, you’ve probably seen the words “Jesus Shuttlesworth” trend on Twitter. That the name of a fictional character, in a 16 year old movie that was neither a hit or critically acclaimed, is still being referenced regularly is a tribute to the greatness of Ray Allen, and the quirky brilliance of Spike Lee, who came up with the cool-yet-odd sounding name for the protagonist in his 1998 film He Got Game.
Other than participating in the NBA nickname jersey gimmick recently, Allen has, for the most part, downplayed the Jesus Shuttlesworth moniker throughout his career – he rejected Lee’s proposal to shoot a He Got Game parody before Game 7 of the NBA Finals last June, and unlike many NBA guys, he doesn’t refer to himself by that nickname, create hashtags of it, or use it as his Twitter handle.
But don’t worry, believers. When Allen finishes his NBA career, Jesus will (maybe) return.
According to the Associated Press, Allen and Lee have discussed a potential He Got Game sequel. Here’s what Allen had to say:
"Sequels to most movies are always fluff and not as good as the first. But it's something we've been talking about for the last couple months. If we get a really good story line and are able to bring everybody back, then it would be something worth doing."
This is in line with a statement Allen made to Fox Sports Florida back in February, when he said he would like to pursue acting again when his NBA career is over. One of his influences for pursuing Hollywood again? Leonardo DiCaprio. Apparently the two bumped into each other at Vegas several years ago and the critically acclaimed actor told the Hall of Fame-bound NBA star he should resume acting.
Now, with Old Boy being a flop, we know Spike Lee could probably use a hit or two. Allen? The most prolific and greatest three point shooter ever?Does he really want to risk tarnishing the Jesus Shuttlesworth legacy if the sequel, like many other decade-plus-later sequels in Hollywood lore, is horrible?