‘Uncle Drew’ star describes what happened on set when Kyrie Irving found out he was traded

Uncle Drew cast
The cast of Kyrie Irving's new movie, "Uncle Drew." –Twitter

When Kyrie Irving was on the set for his upcoming movie, the cast of “Uncle Drew” got to witness some behind-the-scenes footage of an NBA drama featuring the Celtics guard.

Irving’s request to be traded from the Cleveland Cavaliers was granted amid filming for “Uncle Drew” this past summer. One of his co-stars, actor Lil Rel Howery — who appeared in the Oscar-winning film “Get Out” (2017) — recalled the emotions of that moment while on the red carpet for the 90th Academy Awards Sunday.

“The dopest moment was when the trade actually went through,” Howery said. “He was so happy, man. We were in the middle of a scene. We were shooting a scene. His homeboy came in, whispered in his ear, and he just runs out the — we’re filming — he just runs out.”


“He comes back and everybody’s applauding,” Howery continued. “It was a dancing scene, so when you see the movie of him really getting it, that’s him in real life. He was really happy.”

Howery said he wanted to ask Irving about his status as the reports from Cleveland unfolded via the media, but the 38-year-old didn’t feel comfortable prying right off the bat. Once they were better acquainted, however, the two discussed the details.

“We got to know each other a little bit,” Howery said. “I talked to him about it. He was telling me everything.”

Prior to the start of the NBA season, another “Uncle Drew” co-star, retired Pacers guard Reggie Miller, retold his account of when Irving first got word he had been dealt to the Celtics.

“We’re on this small van getting ready to shoot a scene and all of our phones ding at the same time, except for Kyrie’s,” Miller said on an NBA on TNT media call. “He didn’t have his phone.”

According to Miller, the cast members had received notification announcing the initial report Irving had been traded to Boston.

“We’re looking at one another like, ‘Should we tell him?’” he said. “Obviously, we had to tell him because he was like right in front of us. So we all showed him the phone.”


“It was so funny, his expression. He looked at it and was like, ‘Huh. OK, let’s do this.’ And that’s how we all found out that he had been traded to the Boston Celtics.”


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