His name litters many basketball ball jerseys worn by the enthusiasts of the game in the streets.
Kobe Bryant can now add "Oscar award-winner" to his resume after the former basketball star won the Animated Short category at the Academy Awards and claimed the feeling was better than his NBA titles.
Sports Illustrated reported that the short film, based on Bryant's 2015 letter in the Player's Tribune, was directed with animator Glen Keane. Bryant narrated the five-minute film, which was directed by Glen Keane and scored by Oscar victor John Williams.
Bryant said that the inspiration to make his poem into a short animated film, came from his 11 year-old daughter, Gianna, who had told him, "Dad, you always tell us to go after our dreams, so man up".
Others pointed out that Bryant, a two-time NBA Finals MVP and 18-time NBA All Star, now has an award that continues to elude a stunning list of high-profile actors and directors.
After a 20-year career playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, Bryant has used the same "Mamba" mentality he brought to the court to his new endeavors.
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In his speech and in his post-award comments, Bryant had some pointed words for Fox News host Laura Ingraham.
The icon added that he told people he wanted to be a writer after he left the National Basketball Association and people dismissed him.
National Basketball Association icons LeBron James, 'Magic' Johnson and Shaquille O'Neal tweeted their congratulations to Bryant following his Oscar win. "You have to learn the basics of things, and, you know, that's really the hardest part", Bryant said.
"It's, I feel, better than winning the championship, to be honest with you", Kobe told reporters. "This is insane, man, it's insane". An outcry when the film was nominated repeated itself on Sunday night, with some viewers and commentators pointing out that Bryant had been accused of rape in 2003.