It sounds like Disney is really itching to bring Will Smith aboard one of the upcoming live action remakes of their classic animated movies. Late last year, it was reported that he was being eyed to play the lead in the new Dumbo movie, but that didn't end up working out. Not to be deterred, now the studio is hoping they can recruit him onto the Aladdin remake to play the role that belonged to Robin Williams in the 1992 animated original: Genie.
Will Smith is in early talks to play the Genie in this new Aladdin movie. Smith is the first actor to be rumored for this re-telling, and according to Deadline, the production is expected to begin in the United Kingdom this July and stretch into early next year, so that's why his name is popping up so early. However, keep in mind that there's emphasis on the early, so we'll have to wait over the coming weeks to find out whether or not the former Fresh Prince of Bel-Air will sign on the dotted line and get his magic on in Agrabah.
Whether you love Disney's original Aladdin or it ranks lower on your list of animated favorites, most people will agree that Robin Williams' Genie stole the show with his humorous shenanigans, and in some scenes, Williams even ad-libbed most of his dialogue. While Will Smith doesn't have the same kind of comedic background as Williams did, he certainly has no shortage of the personality needed to play such a larger-than-life character. Not to mention that he's just the kind of star power a movie like this needs.
Just like Disney's original Aladdin movie, the live action remake will be loosely based off the legend from The Book of One Thousand and One Nights and follow the eponymous protagonist as he discovers a magic lamp containing a genie who will grant him three wishes. Other notable players in this tale include Jasmine, Aladdin's princess love interest, and Jafar, the evil sorcerer who wants the genie's power for himself. The new Aladdin movie will also remain a musical. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword's Guy Ritchie is handling directing duties, while John August, who wrote the Charlie's Angels movie, penned the script.
It's also worth noting that more than a year before Disney announced they were making a traditional live action Aladdin remake, there was also word about a prequel called Genies being developed that would lead into the main movie. Whether that particular project is still being worked on, let alone if Will Smith would be involved with it, is unclear, although if production on Aladdin is only a couple months away from beginning, it seems unlikely.
What do you think of Will Smith potentially playing Genie in the new Aladdin movie? Let us know in the comments below!