Disney wants Will Smith to play the Genie in its upcoming live-action remake of “Aladdin.” According to The Guardian, the studio is in early negotiations with Hollywood actor to play the iconic role, which was voiced by Robin William in the original film.

Considering his robust and successful musical background, Will would presumably a good fit for the movie. Disney claims that “Aladdin” will have better visuals and action sequences than its previous blockbuster “Beauty and the Beast.”

Will Smith in the headlines

Smith was also in the news when Tim Burton offered him the leading role in live-action remake “Dumbo.” However, he could not work on this project since there were scheduling and salary issues.

He was asked to play the father of the kids who befriend the titular elephant, but the actor chose to stay away from this movie.

Disney has started auditioning new actors and actresses to play Aladdin and Jasmine in the film. On the other hand, director Guy Ritchie says that he would be happy if Middle Eastern celebrities play the leads, so he’s looking for newcomers between 18 and 25. Shooting is likely to begin from July, and a release date has not yet been given.


Smith is the first celeb whose negotiations for the project have been reported in the media as the worldwide casting call is underway for the leading roles. Guy Ritchie was previously in the news for the success of “Lock,” “Rock’n’rolla, and “Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.” He is directing and co-producing “Aladdin,” while the script is penned by John August.

The original film was nominated for several Academy Awards. It was directed by Ron Clements and John Musker, and leading roles were played by Robin Williams, Linda Larkin, Douglas Seale, Jonathan Freeman, Scott Weinger, Gilbert Gottfried, and Frank Welker. The screenplay went through several drafts before Disney’s president Jeffrey Katzenberg agreed to its production.

Aladdin” was released in November 1992, and grossed more than $220 million in the United States, and over $500 million worldwide. After the success of this film, two sequels were released with almost the same story and background music, including “Aladdin and the King of Thieves” and “The Return of Jafar.” Even an animated TV series of the same name was premiered in 2014.

The original film’s popular song “A Whole New World” is likely to be a part of the new movie, but nothing is confirmed.

Smith has featured in various blockbusters, including “Six Degrees of Separation,” “Bad Boys,” “Independence Day,” “Men in Black,” and “Enemy of the State.” Considering his busy schedule, it is impossible to say whether he’ll accept the lead role in Disney's live-action remake or not.