Throughout the last few years, Disney has brought some of our favorite animated movies to life, such as Cinderella, Jungle Book, and Beauty and the Beast. The latest classic to receive the live-action treatment is Aladdin, starring Naomi Scott, Mena Massoud, and Will Smith as the Genie. From what Disney has shown us, there has been a lot of skepticism about Will Smith’s Genie. However, after seeing the film, our team thought he played a wonderful Genie and was pleasantly surprised by his overall performance. Last weekend, the cast of Aladdin sat down with the press to promote the film, here are a few takeaways from the event:
When Will Smith was asked if there were any songs he performed for the movie that he resonated with, Will stated:
“The song that got me over the hump of ‘yes, I can play Genie,’ was Friend Like Me. I went into the studio the first day and I really wanted to play with it to see if I could add something to it. And literally 30 minutes in the studio, and starting to play with it and finding that in that 94, 96 BPM range, we were playing around in there thinking ultimately it was a little bit faster than that. But that 94, 96 BPM range is right old school hip hop. So I grabbed the Honey Drippers which is a really classic old school hip hop breakbeat. And I had them throw that breakbeat under there.”
He continued: “… I was like oh my God. I’m home, I’m home. And then I started playing with the hip hop flavor and then the Genie was really born in my mind from the music. And I understood once I played with Friend Like Me.”
Later on, Will was asked what three wishes he would ask for, this is what he had to say:
“I would have one wish. And my one wish would be divine understanding. I just turned 50 this year. And that lack of understanding, confusion, is the mother of fear and violence. So for me, I would absolutely wish for divine understanding to be shared with all. I think that understanding is the seeds of peace.”
When Naomi Scott was asked how Princess Jasmine’s female empowerment was enhanced in this film, Naomi replied:
” For me, I really think it was a natural progression… The idea that Jasmine needed even more of a challenge in this movie as well. As I said, it’s a natural progression. The fact that she wants to become a leader. I kind of just want people to walk out and go, oh yeah, that makes sense, right? She should be the leader. And as opposed to, it’s not this thing that’s been shoehorned in. It just makes sense. And she’s a human. For me as an actor, my main thing is, how do I humanize her, how do I give her depth. So those things just came naturally.”
Well, there you have it guys. Disney’s live-action Aladdin is in theaters Friday, May 24th, make sure you buy your tickets! Let us know how you liked the movie on social media!
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