Will Smith plays second fiddle to no one!
There has been much speculation on why Will Smith passed on Django Unchained after director Quentin Tarantino publicly stated that Smith was his first choice for the title role.
In an interview with EW, the actor set things straight saying that he turned down the role because he would have been a supporting actor to Christoph Waltz’s lead. “Django wasn’t the lead, so it was like, I need to be the lead. The other character was the lead!”
In the interview it was recorded that Smith pleaded with Tarantino to let Django be the central character in the story. “I was like, ‘No, Quentin, please, I need to kill the bad guy!’”
Ultimately Waltzs won the Academy Award for “Best Supporting Actor” for his role in Django and Jamie Foxx, who was Tarantino’s second choice, didn’t even receive a nomination.
Smith may come off pompous and/or spoiled, but look at it like this: his movies have earned over 5.7 billion worldwide. Though Smith has never won an Academy Award, nobody on the Django cast has that kind of box office dominance. Smith playing a supporting role in a movie would be like Michael Jordan starting the basketball game on the bench. To Smith’s point about having to kill the bad guy; Django needed to kill the ultimate bad guy. He’s the Hero. In the final version he didn’t, and it was awkward that he didn’t. It reminded me of The Dark Knight Rises when all I wanted to see was Batman defeat the supreme bad guy, Bane. However, when Catwoman kills Bane, I felt cheated.
In the End, there was no love lost between Tarantino and Smith. “I thought it was brilliant, Smith said. Just not for me.”
What are your thoughts on this matter?