Will Smith is reportedly returning to Disney, according to recent sources.
Smith will reportedly reprise his role as the Genie in Aladdin 2, the sequel to the 2019 blockbuster that has been sluggishly making its way through the early phases of production.
According to the source, Smith’s Genie would have a “even bigger part” in the follow-up than in the 2019 film. It has been reported that Bad Boys 4 is still in the works, but if the new information is genuine, it would be Smith’s first casting since the “Oscars slap” event last year.
There were rumours that Smith’s Oscars fiasco, in which the actor was expelled from the Academy for ten years after slapping and cursing Chris Rock on live television last year, would have had an impact on his selection to play the Genie.
Smith has undoubtedly lost some supporters as a result of the incident, but the backlash against him currently doesn’t seem to be as strong as it was in the immediate aftermath.
In December, Apple released his movie Emancipation after Smith issued numerous public apologies over the entire ordeal.
Director Guy Ritchie also recently said he wanted to bring back Smith for the sequel. In December, he noted in a THR interview that despite the actor’s mishap at the Oscars, Ritchie knows Smith to be a “generous gentleman” whom he’d love to invite back for Aladdin 2.
“I’ve never met a more lovely man, and working with him was one of the most wonderful, great experiences I’ve ever had,” Ritchie said. “I never saw anything other than the consummate, generous gentleman.”
He added, “I wouldn’t have any issue casting Will Smith in anything, because, as I say, he was just the f—ing perfect gentleman.”
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