On Sunday night, ESPN aired the first two parts of its new ten-part Michael Jordan documentary, The Last Dance. Coaches, Bulls staff, teammates, rivals, and Jordan himself ruminated on the earliest days of his career. A familiar face made an appearance, a guy whom you might be familiar with: Barack Obama, whom the lower-third referred to not as “former president” or “sports fan” or “guy who went 2 for 22 on a basketball court that one time.” The Last Dance noted, instead, that Obama was a “former Chicago resident.”
Speaking to the Athletic, Last Dance director Jason Hehir explained the decision to opt for alternative titles for former presidents Obama and Bill Clinton, who was also interviewed for the series’s episode about Scottie Pippen. “Why should he be an authority just because he’s Bill Clinton?” Hehir asked rhetorically. “Now if Bill Clinton says I was governor of Arkansas when Scottie Pippen was in high school and I saw Scottie play, that’s organic to the story and much more interesting.”
The next two installments of the Space Jam actor’s rise to sports fame will air on ESPN on Sunday, April 26.