Denzel Washington, believe it or not, is a really funny guy. You might not know it due to the fact that he's more known for dispensing rough justice in films like Man On Fire and more recently The Equalizer. But before he was giving criminals a stern talking to, followed by a couple of bullets or blows to the chest, he was making people laugh in movies like Heart Condition and Much Ado About Nothing. Yet despite his mid career renaissance as an action hero with gravitas, he's still eager to make us laugh, and he's ready to do it again. The only problem is Will Smith is dragging his feet on making sure that happens.
At least, that's what Washington himself said in his Reddit AMA yesterday afternoon. You see, he too remembers that Adam McKay's remake of Uptown Saturday Night is still in play, and he's eager to jump back in as he's displayed in his remarks below. There's just one wrinkle in the whole process, which he also has no qualms to make a lighthearted jab towards.
I actually have a script for a remake of UPTOWN SATURDAY NIGHT that Will Smith wants to put together, that's been written and that we're talking about. You can hit Will up and ask him what he's waiting for.
To say that Will Smith delaying the production of a film is a new chain of behavior would be a complete and utter lie, especially considering we're just getting a Bad Boys III out of him and Martin Lawrence. Not to mention, the Independence Day sequel probably delayed its rollout to try and convince Smith to come back for the two part sequel. Whereas Denzel Washington is being more adventurous with his career, Smith seems to be taking more of a backseat to his children's artistic ambitions.
That doesn't mean there's no glimmer of hope though, as Adam McKay (Uptown Saturday Night's attached director) has worked with Will Smith recently, as he was the ESPN Newscaster in Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues' hysterical news team street fight. Maybe Bad Boys III will spark Smith to finally get moving and give us the comedy film we've been dreaming of ever since it was announced. After all, it looked like Denzel Washington himself was ready to pass on the project at one point, but it sounds like he's gladly come back around on the matter.
There's no denying that Will Smith and Denzel Washington are both funny, funny men. They're also equally charming, as was evident in Washington's warm and humorous handling of yesterday's AMA. An Uptown Saturday Night would probably only work if these two men were starring, so it's not like it can be recast to save the project. The best we can hope for is Will Smith to start wanting to be a movie star again, and for Denzel Washington to get his wish and be given the opportunity to remind us why he's such a movie star in the first place.
For now, we'll have to be satisfied with Washington's spiritual sequel to Man On Fire, The Equalizer, which will be released into theaters on September 26th.