Kobe Bryant Cameos in #Ghostbusters Reboot NBA Tie-in

To celebrate the its all-female Ghostbusters reboot opening on July 15, Sony has unveiled new Ghostbusters spots featuring popular basketball stars!

The new series of promotional spots were launched during Thursday night's Game 1 of the NBA Finals on ABC between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors. East Coast audiences saw an ad featuring current New York Knicks Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis alongside legend Walt "Clyde" Frazier and the team's most visible fan, Spike Lee. That ad was shot at an empty Madison Square Garden. And on the West Coast, viewers watched a spot featuring recently retired Los Angeles Laker Kobe Bryant decked out in the famous Ghostbusters jumpsuit at his former home, the Staples Center.

"Everyone wondered what Kobe would do after the NBA," said Josh Greenstein, president of worldwide marketing and distribution for Sony Pictures. "Now we know - he's a Ghostbuster."

When Bryant announced his retirement, Sony quietly enlisted the basketball great to join the film's marketing efforts.

Bryant was involved in his commercial's scripting process and documented the shoot with a gallery of behind-the-scenes photos. Bryant's footage was posted before the game Thursday through The Players' Tribune (he's an investor). His uniform was emblazoned with "Mamba," his nickname.

Sony is also targeting Ghostbusters' female fan base. Last week, the film's stars Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon appeared on Ellen during the same episode that featured presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton.

"Filming in an empty MSG added to the ambiance of the shoot," said Carrie Brzezinski, ESPN CreativeWorks' vp of marketing solutions. "It's such a massive, storied space with many of its own 'ghosts.' Between shots, we delved into some really heady issues, like what Slimer might eat if he really did haunt MSG. In the original movie, he famously took over a hot dog vendor at Rockefeller Center, so hot dogs would be my guess - he's into that old school New York street food."

Sources: The Hollywood Reporter, The Players' Tribune.


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