When production on the movie began in 1995, Michael Jordan had just come back from retirement ... so he and Pippen were teammates in the Chicago Bulls again -- which had people wondering why didn't #33 have a significant role???
So, when we saw Pip at LAX on Thursday, we needed that explanation!!!
I think I was injured or recovering from offseason injuries," Pippen said ... "I wasn't able to participate."
If he WAS healthy though, Pippen says he would have agreed to a role in a heartbeat.
Meanwhile, LeBron James is already shooting the sequel -- and some people are wondering why he didn't sign Zion Williamson to take on the MonStars.
Pippen has an explanation for that, too -- "They haven't reached that pinnacle yet!"