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Air's Chris Tucker Wrote His Scenes After Phone Calls With Howard White Himself

Because Ben Affleck's "Air" is inspired by a true story, nearly every character within the film is based on a real-life counterpart who assisted in the creation of Nike's "Air Jordan" line. This includes Howard White (Chris Tucker), the current vice president of the Jordan brand and a close personal friend of Michael Jordan — whom Jordan himself requested be added to the script.

This created a slight problem since the character of Howard White did not appear at all in the original screenplay. Thankfully, Chris Tucker was able to write all of his own scenes after some entertaining phone calls with the real-life Howard White."I spent hours on the phone with Howard White, my friend Howard, talking about him," said Tucker during an interview with GQ. "So he gave me all of this information and I had to put it all together, and I pretty much wrote all of my scenes."

Tucker went on to praise how Ben Affleck facilitated this relationship with White and how Affleck encouraged and supported him throughout creating these scenes and finding this particular character.

Ben Affleck asked for Tucker specifically to play Howard White

It makes sense that Ben Affleck would be so supportive and adaptable to Chris Tucker's work on "Air," since Affleck himself requested that Tucker join the project once they decided to bring Howard White's story to life.

"Ben has told me several times over the years that he wanted to work with me. I thought he was just playing," Tucker said in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. "Then my people came to me and said, 'Ben wants you to do this role, but there's not a lot to it. He wants you to play Howard White.'" The stars aligned once again when Affleck approached Tucker for this role, since it turned out that he actually knew Howard White from a charity golf tournament the two participate in each year.

Although it's obvious that Tucker appreciated the actor-director relationship between himself and Ben Affleck, he made sure to clarify that playing a real character (especially someone you know) was still immensely challenging –- and that writing his own scenes made this one of the most challenging roles of his entire career.