Will Smith Opposes Disney, Movie Erased From Existence

in Disney, Entertainment

Will Smith as the Genie in live-action 'Aladdin'

Credit: Disney

Actor Will Smith recently made comments that most definitely fly in the face of Disney, one of the most prominent and popular studios in the world.

Smith’s breakthrough came in the late 1980s when he starred as a charismatic and quick-witted teenager in the popular sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, which ran from 1990 to 1996. The show not only showcased his acting talent but also marked his entry into the world of entertainment.

Independence Day Will Smith Ross Bagley Vivica A Fox
Credit: 20th Century Fox

In the mid-1990s, Smith transitioned from television to film, achieving remarkable success with blockbuster movies such as Bad Boys (1995) and Independence Day (1996). These roles solidified his status as a bankable leading man in Hollywood. However, it was his role in the sci-fi action film Men in Black (1997) that firmly established him as a global superstar. The film’s immense success led to sequels in 2002 and 2012, further cementing Smith’s place in Hollywood history.

Throughout his career, Smith has consistently demonstrated his versatility as an actor, taking on roles in a variety of genres. He showcased his dramatic prowess in movies like Ali (2001), for which he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor, and The Pursuit of Happyness (2006), which earned him another Oscar nomination.

Smith’s charismatic on-screen presence and his ability to seamlessly transition between action, comedy, and drama have contributed to his enduring appeal. He has headlined numerous successful films, including I Am Legend (2007), Hancock (2008), Suicide Squad (2016), and Aladdin (2019).

live action aladdin
Credit: Disney

Smith’s relationship with Disney can be highlighted through his involvement in the live-action adaptation of the animated classic Aladdin. In 2019, he took on the iconic role of Genie, originally voiced by the late Robin Williams, in the live-action version of the film. Smith brought his own unique spin to the character, blending his comedic flair with his musical talents. Despite initial skepticism, Smith’s portrayal was well-received by audiences and contributed to the film’s commercial success.

After Disney had originally teased that there would be a sequel to Aladdin, the company reportedly shut down the idea. Aladdin actor Mena Massoud confirmed in comments several months ago that a sequel had become highly unlikely and that Disney had essentially erased the movie from existence, at least for the time being.

This was Smith’s first major film in which he worked for Disney, and now he is squarely aligned on the other side of the aisle as Disney and other major studios have been fighting the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes.

Will Smith holding award at 2022 Oscars
Credit: ABC

As we’ve previously reported, Disney CEO Bob Iger received tons of backlash after coming out and calling the strikes “disturbing.” The CEO was called out by several prominent actors and actresses in Hollywood, and just recently, comments from Will Smith show what he thinks about the ongoing strikes, as well, calling them a “pivotal moment” in the profession.

“I wanna talk for a second about ACTING,” Smith wrote. “As some of y’all mighta heard, my guild, @SAGAFTRA are on strike along with our writer colleagues in the WGA. It’s a pivotal moment for our profession. 33 years into my career as an actor and there are still some days when I feel like I’m that kid from Philly who’s on borrowed time, even though I know I’ve been extraordinarily blessed and lucky to have worked as an actor all this time,” Smith continued. “It’s thanks to my friend, my teacher and my mentor @aaronspeiser whom I fondly refer to as ‘coach’ that those days when I feel like I don’t belong are fewer and further between.”

It’s unclear if Will Smith will be returning to Disney for any projects in the future. With the actor not likely to reprise his role as Genie– at least not in the near future– it has yet to be shared if any other roles with the company could open up. Smith will return to the big screen in another installment of the Bad Boys franchise alongside Martin Lawrence.

What did you think of the live-action remake of Aladdin? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments!

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