The Grammys were full of surprises, but one of its bigger ones happened during a commercial break when a teaser for the White Men Can’t Jump remake starring Jack Harlow and Sinqua Walls aired. Thirty seconds isn’t going to tell you much about what a feature-length film is going to bring, but from the looks of it, the remake might work.
The original White Men Can’t Jump, which of course dropped in 1992 and starred Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson, is a certified classic, so this reimagining—directed by Calmatic and written by LEVEL cover star Kenya Barris and Doug Hall—has Shaq-filled shoes to fill. A large portion of whether it’ll be successful hinges on Harlow’s acting ability and chemistry with his co-star, Walls. The 30 seconds have convinced me that the film will have no problems with Harlow’s ability—the charisma he shows off in interviews is present here. The jury is still out on if these two guys will actually play off of each other well—not unlike Luka and Kyrie's impending team-up. That analogy works on multiple levels.
The other big question is if Calmatic—a booked, blessed, and highly favored music video director—can adapt to feature film. Some of his credits include Kendrick Lamar’s “Rich Spirit,” Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” and a handful of videos for Vince Staples. However, his House Party remake was poorly received by critics and got a mixed reception from audiences. Hopefully, this is where Calmatic turns it around and he has the double-edged sword of working with Kenya Barris at his disposal. Barris is hilarious and has an innate talent for building characters and arcs. However, for some reason, he’s become one of Black Twitter’s recurring villains. If you showed his biggest haters Do the Right Thing and slapped “A Kenya Barris Joint” in the opening credits, people will say it sucks and complain about how Rosie Perez is light-skinned. Them’s the breaks.
Hollywood has too many remakes these days, but we’ll have to tune in to Hulu on May 19 to give White Men Can’t Jump a shot. Peep the first look below.
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