Similar to how Jordan’s last season with the Chicago Bulls was captured on camera, thus giving us The Last Dance, Bryant’s final season with the Lakers was also heavily documented, according to ESPN.
"They had unprecedented and, by far, greater access than anyone else ever," John Black, who led the Lakers' public relations department for 27 years, last serving as vice president, said of the crew who captured the footage of Bryant’s last season. "We certainly allowed them to do everything we could within what the league would allow, and sometimes, with a wink and look-the-other-way, allowed them even more."
Bryant retired from the National Basketball Association after the 2015-16 season, which was also his 20th season with the Lakers. Bryant; Gianna Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter; and seven others were killed in a helicopter crash on January 26.
Sources told ESPN that the footage from Bryant’s last season with the Lakers was in the editing stage for a potential documentary to be released further down the line. But with Bryant’s untimely death, who knows if the project will be fast-tracked.
If Bryant’s last season footage is indeed released in a documentary of some kind, Cleveland Cavaliers forward Larry Nance Jr. said the moment will be a little bittersweet.
"It was really cool because, like, this is the Black Mamba. But at the same time, like, this is also the worst season in Lakers history,” Nance Jr. said. “So while I'm really proud to be in the NBA playing with this absolute legend, [that] is not something that I'm really trying to relive."