Independence Day 2 Just Cast Will Smith's Son

It was all the way back in 2013 that we first learned that one of the main protagonists in Roland Emmerich's upcoming Independence Day 2 would be the stepson of Will Smith's character from the original, Captain Steven Hiller, but only today (about two years later) are we learning about the actor who will be playing the part: Survivor's Remorse star Jessie Usher.

This news comes to us from The Hollywood Reporter,which doesn't identify Steven Hiller's stepson as the lead in Independence Day 2, but instead as "a central character" in the 2016 blockbuster. The news of Jessie Usher's casting comes just a few weeks after the news broke that Liam Hemsworth was in talks for a lead role in the movie, though it's worth noting that this latest trade report doesn't mention the Australian actor's involvement. Thus far, they are the only two new names said to be attached to the sequel, which will be bringing back Jeff Goldblum as computer whiz David Levinson and Bill Pullman as President Thomas J. Whitmore. As previously reported, Will Smith will not be coming back to reprise his part.

At this point in his career, Jessie Usher does have some big screen experience - most recently playing a role in the football drama When The Game Stands Tall - though most of his acing career has been on the small screen. Since 2005, he has been on a variety of shows, including Without A Trace, Hannah Montana, The Mentalist, Criminal Minds, and Level Up. As noted earlier, he is currently starring in the Lebron James-produced television show Survivor's Remorse, which sees him playing a professional basketball player who moves his family to Atlanta after going pro. Starz aired the first season last year, and the second season is going to come around in September.

Independence Day 2 will be set 20 years after the original, and be set in a world that has not only repaired itself after the alien invasion, but actually benefited from the technology that the extraterrestrials left behind. What the human race doesn't know, however, is that the invaders from the first movie sent out a distress beacon before they were destroyed - and now backup is finally on the way. We should be hearing about even more casting soon, as previous reports have said that the movie will feature a new generation of human heroes. It seems that Liam Hemsworth and Jessie Usher are the first two members of that group, but who will they be joined by?

20th Century Fox has officially dated Independence Day 2 to hit theaters on June 24, 2016, which means that production is likely gearing up to start in the next few months. This means that we're likely going to be hearing a lot more about this sequel in coming weeks, so be sure to stay tuned for more updates!

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.