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Russellville native Sonequa Martin-Green inspiring students with roles in ‘Space Jam’ sequel, more

Green is starring in Space Jam: A New Legacy.

Posted: Jul 16, 2021 7:25 PM
Updated: Jul 19, 2021 3:23 PM

A North Alabama woman plays a big role in Space Jam: A New Legacy and it’s now playing in theaters and on HBO Max.

Sonequa Martin-Green, who plays NBA star LeBron James' wife in the movie, is from Russellville. You may also know the actress from her starring role on "Star Trek: Discovery" on Paramount+ and her time on "The Walking Dead" on AMC.

WAAY-31 went to Russellville to talk to a high school drama teacher who used to perform right beside Green.

At the auditorium at Russellville High School where this was the first place many saw Sonequa shine on stage.

Now, one drama teacher wants to let her students know you can make it from a small town to the big leagues if you just try hard enough.

"She took the same things that she learned here in Franklin County and she's been able to transfer those and it's so neat to see her now when, we knew her, back then she was still Sonequa," said Patrice Smith.

They both got into acting and performed together on the stage, and now, Smith is showing her kids the kind of heights they could reach just like Green.

Coming off of COVID precautions, Smith is excited for the endless possibilities.

"It was so hard last year because we couldn't see in front of our faces. So to be able to have so much open space and open road ahead of us like absolutely do it and that's exactly what she did," she said.

Smith told us Green was always different and radiated nothing but good energy, so to see her in her second major film is humbling and inspiring.

She now has this to say to her kids: anything is possible.

"That absolutely you can go to a small public high school in Alabama and now you're starring alongside LeBron in the second Space Jam," she said.

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