After HBO’s winning time was criticized by Magic Johnson and more, John C. Reilly recalls a sweet meeting with Lakers owner Jeanie Buss

HBO’s last weekend Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty ended its acclaimed and criticized first run of the season. Lots of fans and critics have praised the sports series, although Laker alumni such as Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar have spoken out against it. Amid the critiques, it seems at least one of the show’s stars had a pleasant encounter with one of the NBA franchise’s greats. John C. Reilly, who plays the late team owner Jerry Buss, apparently had a nice exchange with the man’s daughter, current controlling owner Jeanie Buss.

Much has already been said about the portraits in winning time, especially those of Magic Johnson and Jerry West. John C. Reilly portrays Jerry Buss as a comical and business-minded man who has a tendency to fly through his pocket when it comes to making big decisions. Season 1 also addressed his playboy tendencies, which were widely covered by the media during his team’s Showtime era in the ’80s. However, when Jeanie Buss approached Reilly during a Laker game, she didn’t let go about his performance as her father. She even praised one of the actor’s other notable works:

I went to a Lakers game and waited in the lounge for the game to start, and she came up to me and said, “Hello, I’m Jeanie Buss.” I was like, wow. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be thrown out of the building or something. She said, ‘Listen, the team isn’t on the show, so I’m not here to say anything good or bad about it. But I wanted to tell you something personal: my father knew who you were. He liked musicals, and he saw you in Chicago and really liked your performance as Mister Cellophane. Reilly received his first and only Oscar nomination, for Best Supporting Actor, for his performance in Chicago as Amos ‘Mister Cellophane’ Hart. He said, ‘See that actor? That’s someone who can make you laugh and make you cry. That is the mark of a great actor.’

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