‘Air’ drop! Ben Affleck directs story of Nike’s Air Jordans

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Ben Affleck is here to remind us that he is more than awards arm-candy to his new superstar wife, but is himself a Best Picture Oscar winner for the thriller Argo. This time he is directing his buddy Matt Damon, among others, in a story about the revolutionary partnership between the athletic shoe manufacturer Nike and the (at the time) rookie NBA basketball player Michael Jordan. Taking place in 1984 (with men’s curly coifs to match), Matt Damon plays maverick Nike executive Sonny Vaccaro, with Ben Affleck as Nike co-founder Phil Knight, and Viola Davis as Mike’s mom Deloris Jordan. I had only recently seen a short doc about how the partnership between Nike and Jordan was completely unprecedented at the time, the perfect match between celebrity and consumers/fans who wanted a piece of the star athlete’s glamour and talent. Who knew that the origin story of a shoe could be so intriguing?

Air, directed by Ben Affleck, stars Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Jason Bateman, Chris Messina, Matthew Maher, Marlon Wayans, Jay Mohr, Julius Tennon, with Chris Tucker and Viola Davis. The movie is coming to theaters April 5, 2023.


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