Will Smith Turned Down ‘Django Unchained’ Because Django Wasn’t the Lead: “I need to be the lead!”

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Will-SmithWill Smith won’t consider any role that doesn’t feature him in the lead. This movie star attitude actually cost him the lead role in the Oscar-winning film, Django Unchained.

Smith told Entertainment Weekly, “Django wasn’t the lead, so it was like, I need to be the lead.  The other character was the lead!”  The actor is referring to the bounty hunter character, Dr. King Schultz, as the role that appeared to have a bigger part in the story.  Funnily enough, the role (played by Christoph Waltz) was actually submitted to the Academy Awards as a supporting role, and Jamie Foxx (who ended up playing Django) was submitted as Best Actor.

Smith claimed he tried to convince writer/director Quentin Tarantino to make Django more central to the plot.  “I was like, ‘No, Quentin, please, I need to kill the bad guy!’”  But despite turning down the role, Smith’s career is still trucking along, including the upcoming summer release of After Earth, a sci-fi film he made with this son, Jaden.

At the end of the day, Smith was still a fan of how Django Unchained turned out.

“I thought it was brilliant,” he said.  “Just not for me.”

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1 Comment

  1. Dan Franko via Facebook on

    I think Christoph Waltz has proven that the supporting roles are the better ones.

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