rodrigo-santoro

Briefly: The movie Focus once had Ben Affleck attached as the lead, but it became a Will Smith movie earlier this year. And now Rodrigo Santoro, who’ll once again play Xerxes in 300: Rise of an Empire, has been set to play “the powerful owner of a Formula One race team” who is also the antagonist to Smith’s character. The heist movie will be directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (Crazy, Stupid, Love). Read More »

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Independence Day

Roland Emmerich, Dean Devlin, Bill Pullman, and even the outer space aliens are returning for the long-awaited sequel to Independence Day, but one prominent figure that won’t be back is Will Smith. After years of whispers that Smith was asking for too much money to come back, Emmerich has confirmed that that is indeed the case.

That’s not the only reason Smith isn’t reprising his role, however. According to Emmerich, he doesn’t really want Smith back anyway because the actor is too famous. Hit the jump to read his comments.

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Men In Black 3 Will Smith

Sony is developing a fourth Men in Black film, but it may not be able to rely upon Will Smith to play the charming lead. While Smith led audiences into the world of a secret government bureau incorporated to police galactic aliens on Earth, and acted as the franchise center for three films, he’s not so sure about continuing on.

Oren Uziel (The Kitchen Sink) was recently signed to rewrite 21 Jump Street 2, and to script Men in Black 4. But without Smith, who has helped power international interest in the series, is there any point to pushing the series forward? Conversely, once returns from After Earth are fully tallied, could Smith revise his lack of interest in a fourth MIB? Read More »

After Earth Smiths

A Will Smith movie without charisma is like an M. Night Shyamalan movie without a twist. It sounds interesting or different going in, but this one ultimately doesn’t deliver.

Much as Shyamalan made his career on surprise twists, Smith made himself the biggest star in the world by focusing his talent and charm. Over his last few movies, the director has begun to move away from the “twist” hallmark, and with the pair’s first collaboration, After Earth, Smith also forgoes his calling card. The actor’s undeniable charm and screen presence have been completely excised from his portrayal of a cold, fearless military leader. Without that personality to fall back on Smith’s character becomes a personification of the movie: far from captivating and only somewhat watchable.

After Earth begins with a promising story idea — Smith’s character is on a life or death mission with his son – but ends up hollow and disjointed, with questionable choices made all around. It’s a good nugget of a premise that never feels truly developed. Read More »

Drive

There are lots of small updates on upcoming and hypothetical sequels, which means it’s time for another edition of Sequel Bits. Read about the following after the jump:

  • Arnold Schwarzenegger says The Legend of Conan, Terminator 5 and Triplets are all still being written.
  • Kevin Smith has a production schedule in mind for Clerks III.
  • Eric Roberts joins the cast of Human Centipede 3 (Final Sequence).
  • As we wait on the new Bridget Jones movie, the character returns in book form.
  • Another director may be on the short list for Bond 24.
  • Daniel Radcliffe hypothesizes a Harry Potter sequel.
  • Nicolas Winding Refn says don’t expect a sequel to Drive.
  • Will Smith suggests he could appear in Independence Day 2, but it’s not looking good.

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the-wild-bunch

Is Will Smith looking to make up for balking at starring in Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained by starring in a remake of one of the biggest landmarks in the Western canon? Smith has signed to produce and star in the remake of Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch, which Warner Bros. has been trying to kickstart for a few years. That’s a piece of news that sounds pretty ridiculous, as the family-friendly guy who shied away fro Django is just about the last guy I’d expect to remake a film famous for its violence and adult themes.

(And yeah, let’s just get it out of the way: The Wild Wild Bunch. There, now we can move on.)

Read More »

After Earth Web 5

M. Night Shyamalan‘s new film and potential comeback After Earth has been moved up one week from June 7 to May 31. It’s a good move on Columbia’s part, as the Will Smith movie can very likely dominate that late May weekend, which is otherwise occupied by Now You See Me and The Purge.

After Earth has Smith and his son Jaden Smith playing a father/son duo who crash land on Earth long after humanity has fled the planet. In the race to signal for rescue, the two men face ferocious Earth-grown dangers and an alien creature that dogs his steps.

After the break, we’ve got info on two more potential Will Smith films. Read More »

Will-Smith-Smiling

When Ben Affleck was in his “choosing between projects” phase right after the completion of Argo, he flirted with acting in a Warner Bros. film called Focus. The movie, scripted and set to be directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (Crazy, Stupid, Love) is about a young female con artist who teams up with an older, more experienced male counterpart.

The original idea was to re-team Crazy, Stupid, Love actors Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. That didn’t work, and Kristen Stewart was soon set to play the young criminal, with Affleck to play her partner. Affleck dropped out (edit: both actors dropped out, Affleck and Stewart) but now Will Smith is in talks to play the role. Read More »

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