Jack Nicholson makes rare public appearance at LA Lakers game

Jack Nicholson thrilled basketball and film fans alike as he made a rare public appearance at an NBA playoff game.

The actor, who turned 86 last week, was in the crowd as the Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies on their home turf on Friday (28 April).

Nicholson sat in his usual courtside seat at the Crypto.com Arena for the occasion – marking the first time he’d attended since last season’s opening game in October 2021.

Joined by his son Ray Nicholson, the One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest star watched the game from his usual position near the opposing bench.

Upon arrival at the arena, Nicholson shook hands with basketball team executives and spoke to reporters, who greeted him by saying “welcome back”. He also embraced star player LeBron James before the start of the game.

Nicholson first got season tickets for the Lakers in 1970 and has long been one of the team’s most high-profile supporters. Throughout his career, he has been known to adjust his shooting schedules to ensure he was able to watch every significant Lakers game.

Nicholson has even occasionally appeared on the court when he disagreed strongly with an official’s call.

With the film star being such a committed fan of the team, Nicholson’s long absence from the courtside has been noticeable.

Jack Nicholson (Getty Images)
Jack Nicholson (Getty Images)

Nicholson has lived a more reclusive life in recent years. Earlier this month, fans of the actor defended him after unflattering pictures of him were published in a British tabloid.

The actor, also known for his roles in The Shining and The Departed, was seen wearing an orange t-shirt and looking sleepy on the balcony of his Beverly Hills home.

Prior to then, Nicholson had not been seen in public for 18 months.

His last film role was in 2010, when Nicholson starred alongside Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson and Paul Rudd in the romcom How Do You Know.