LeBron & Bronny James to be Featured on Trading Card in New Fanatics Partnership
LeBron James is signing a multi-year trading card partnership deal with Fanatics Collectibles, the sports memorabilia company announced Wednesday at 6:23 a.m. PT, matching the two numbers King James has worn during his all-time great NBA career. As part of this year’s 2023-24 Bowman University Chrome Basketball set hitting stores later this month, there will be a one-of-one autographed card featuring the Lakers star in his St. Vincent-St. Mary’s high school jersey and his oldest son Bronny in his USC jersey. The 100-player set will also feature women’s college hoops superstars Caitlin Clark and Paige Bueckers.
Blue Jays' Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Joins Star-studded BodyArmor Roster
Toronto Blue Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. has inked a multi-year deal with BodyArmor, the sports drink brand confirmed Wednesday. Teaming up with the Montreal-born All-Star coincides with the company’s first international rollout, with its product now available across Canada. When talking about legendary BodyArmor investor Kobe Bryant and fellow endorser Ronald Acuña Jr., who inspired his off-field ambitions and strategy, Guerrero Jr said, “Off the field, I’m just trying to keep the same mindset that those two guys have.” In addition to BodyArmor, Guerrero Jr. has endorsement deals with Wilson, Jordan Brand, and Topps. Other BodyArmor athletes include Donovan Mitchell, Trae Young, Sabrina Ionescu, Alex Morgan, Christian McCaffrey, and CeeDee Lamb.
Nick Kyrgios, Naomi Osaka's Hana Kuma Launching New Video Podcast Series
Nick Kyrgios is leveraging his meddling reputation in tennis to spark deep conversation outside of it. The Aussie tennis star is collaborating with Naomi Osaka‘s Emmy-nominated media company, Hana Kuma, to launch a new video podcast series titled “Good Trouble with Nick Kyrgios.” Launching on Jan. 24, Kyrgios will speak with the likes of Gordon Ramsay, Jemele Hill, Jay Shetty, Frances Tiafoe, Rainn Wilson, Gary Vaynerchuk, Mike Tyson, and Osaka herself, who is making a return to the court after welcoming a daughter last year. Audiences in the US can tune in via the Tennis Channel, and in Europe, one can tune in on Discovery+ and Eurosport as well as on Hana Kuma’s YouTube channel and podcast platforms.
‘Oppenheimer’ Helps IMAX Crack $1 Billion in 2023 Revenue
Oppenheimer cleaned up at the Golden Globes over the weekend, and it shouldn’t be surprising considering the film played a large part in IMAX dominating the box office in 2023. IMAX had its second-highest grossing year in history last year, hauling in $1.06 billion thanks to movies playing on their screens across the globe. Variety notes the biographical thriller, directed by Christopher Nolan, is now the highest-performing movie to be released on IMAX in 2023, earning $183.2 million from screenings. Revered for his lengthy and mind-bending projects, Nolan said he preferred watching the film in an IMAX theater, which likely led fans to seek out a participating theater to see for themselves. IMAX will have more than 100 films playing on their screens in 2024, including Dune — Part Two, Joker: Folie à Deux, and Deadpool 3.
Tom Cruise & Warner Bros. to Jointly Make Movies in 2024
Tom Cruise and Warner Bros. Discovery are joining forces to develop and produce original and franchise theatrical films starting this year. Although little was divulged about specific projects, the veteran actor and Warner Bros. have a decades-long history. Cruise has previously starred in classic films produced and distributed by the studio, like Edge of Tomorrow, Magnolia, Eyes Wide Shut, Risky Business, and more. “Excited to share this news. I look forward to making great movies together!” Cruise wrote on his Instagram, alongside a photo of the announcement.
SAG-AFTRA Signs Agreement to Set Conditions for Use of AI in Gaming
SAG-AFTRA signed an agreement with an AI voiceover studio that sets conditions for the use of artificial intelligence in video games. Announced Tuesday during a press event at CES 2024, the deal permits SAG-AFTRA members to work with Replica Studios to license their voice to game studios. According to the Guild, this covers licensed voices “in video game development and other interactive media projects from pre-production to final release.” In addition to establishing minimum provisions, the compromise also aims to ensure performer consent and negotiation for uses of their digital voice double. It requires that performers have the opportunity to opt out of its continued use in new projects.