Jun 14, 2012

Will Smith's Sequels And Turning Down Django Unchained

Now this is a story
All about how
Will Smith turned Django Unchained down
So if you'd like to take a moment
Just sit right there
I'll tell you what Will Smith's future bares!
Whether you prefer the goofy and eccentric Fresh Prince from Bell Air or the arrogant, suave, but a little rough around the edges Hancock, Will Smith has seemingly seen it all and done it all. Piecing together several interviews from other sources, Collider has given us a look into the immediate present and somewhat distant future for the producer/actor/rapper.

Word around the water cooler is that the next few years may see sequels to just about any film Smith has ever touched. Scripts are in the work for Men In Black 4, Independence Day 2, Hancock 2, Bad Boys 3, I Am Robot 2, and I Am Legend 2. Yes, I Am Legend 2, despite the ending in the theatrical release. Maybe I Am Legend 2 won't have anything to do with his character Robert Neville at all, or maybe it would pick up from one of the alternate endings released on DVD/Blu-Ray. Either way, Smith was reported by BBC News as having said about I Am Legend 2: “Producers are working on it.  I’m not actually working on it. If it’s great, I’m into it.” Into as in... he'd pick up the role? Or a producer credit? Or what? It's left unclear, but it does confirm that the film is in the works.

Men In Black 4 on the other hand, Smith told BBC News that if fans really wanted it, he'd be all over it. However, “I don’t want to be the sequel guy.  I figure I’ve got about six or seven more years where I can run and jump a little bit and then I’m going butt and gut for the rest of my career. Butt and gut.” To think, in only half a decade Smith might become the portly comedic gentleman in films rather than the take action first, ask questions later action film star he's been for over a decade and a half. But I'd say he's earned it. Pig out, Will, you've given us plenty, you've earned it!

But what really deserves attention is his mention of Quentin Tarantino’s Blaxploitation spaghetti Western Django Unchained starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Christopher Waltz, and why he turned down the starring title role. When word got loose that Smith was Tarantino's first choice as Django, which later went to Jamie Foxx, everyone assumed Smith's rejection was a PR image move. Knowing Tarantino's style for violence, obscenities, sexuality, racism and other taboo's, Smith's not the first name many would think for the role. But Smith instead explained to Empire, “I came really close, it was one of the most amazing screenplays I had ever ever seen. I was in the middle of Men In Black 3 and [Tarantino] was ready to go, and I just couldn’t sit with him and get through the issues, so I didn’t want to hold him up. That thing’s going to be ridiculous. It is a genius screenplay.”

Rather than be in Django Unchained, Smith will is next looking to co-starring an M. Night Shyamalan film, titled After Earth (or 1000 A.E.) with his son, Jaden Smith. According to Variety, the film was originally written by Gary Whitta who wrote the script for The Book of Eli, although Shyamalan has tailored the script to meet his needs. As in Will Smith is dead the whole time or it's not really Earth or some other zany twist. The premise is about Will and Jaden crash-landing their ship to earth 1000 years after mankind has abandoned their home planet. Will Smith is gravely injured in the crash and Jaden has to find help on the seemingly uninhabited globe. Already sounds a bit far-fetched to me. Not the crash-landing on Earth 1000 years in the future, as Planet of the Apes already solidified that as plausible, but that given the Earth's size they'd just so happen to land close to some people who stayed behind. Come on.

As for the golden egg Smith gave up, Django Unchained releases in December 25 (Christmas Day), 2012. Here are two trailers for the film, showing different clips.

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