Jonah Hill is paying tribute to his “hero” Kobe Bryant by revisiting a heartfelt exchange between the star and his late brother.
The actor has been reflecting on his love for the basketball superstar, following his death in a helicopter crash in California on Sunday (26Jan20), and admits one special photo of himself and his brother, Jordan Feldstein, at a Los Angeles Lakers game is suddenly very special.
“This picture became a funny internet thing years back and it always made me laugh when I’d see memes of it,” the Moneyball star writes on Instagram. “This is about as comically awkward as it gets.”
The photo in question features Jonah and his brother sharing a Lakers team bench with Kobe.
“It’s a dumb bit but I really liked it at the time. I hesitate to post this as it’s usually connected to humor.”
He explains the shot was taken shortly before he and his brother met their hero: “I’m sitting next to my brother and he’s taking this. It was the night we both met Kobe and he was so nice to us,” he adds. “So funny, so amazing and so kind (in the middle of a game!). My brother and I grew up worshiping (sic) the Lakers and because of my job we got to sit next to Kobe and the whole team! I have lived a privileged life. Truly. We were literally buzzing with excitement to meet our hero.
“I’m sitting between Kobe and my brother and now they’re both gone. I have been staring at this photo for days in disbelief and sadness and joy. It’s my favorite picture and I think it represents for me, all of the hard and amazing things in life and how fleeting they are. But their fleeting nature doesn’t make them any less beautiful.”
He adds: “I’ve been thinking a lot about saying Rest In Peace and what that means. But I don’t think Kobe or my brother are resting. I think they’re hustling up there. Working hard and getting s**t done. Cuz that’s what they do.
“All my love to the ones here left behind. Take care of each other and love each other. That’s the lesson I’ve learned.”