The Strange Case of Will Smith and “Django Unchained”
Will Smith is one of the most bankable and likeable faces in Hollywood, even considering the strange antics of Jaden Smith. Will Smith is also known for turning down movies: a lot of movies. Not “Deadshot” has shared the details as to why he turned down Tarantino’s 2012 spaghetti-western vengeance flick, “Django Unchained”, and the reasons are bizarre indeed.
It would seem, from Smith’s interview at the Hollywood Reporter’s round-table (with other stalwart thespians of the screen), that the man wanted Django to be, in his own words:
“the greatest love story that African-Americans had ever seen”
The one thing that Smith had to reckon with was creator Quentin Tarantino. Now, for anybody even vaguely familiar with Tarantino’s work will know that ‘love’ features way down in his list to put in a movie- under revenge, a badass Sam Jackson, and extremely gratuitous shots of toes.
Smith had “hours and hours” of discussion with Tarantino about it, trying to resolve the impasse, but Tarantino, being Tarantino, a notoriously contrarian person, they failed to see eye-to-eye in the end. Smith also noted that the director has not called him back since.
According to Smith:
“I wanted to make that movie so badly, but I felt the only way was, it had to be a love story, not a vengeance story. I don’t believe in violence as the reaction to violence. So when I’m looking at that, it’s like: “No, no, no. It has to be for love.” We can’t look at what happens in Paris [the terrorist attacks] and want to f— somebody up for that. Violence begets violence. So I just couldn’t connect to violence being the answer. Love had to be the answer.”
In a parallel world, if Will Smith had been in charge, “Django” would be the soaring love story of two slaves separated by fate and a devilish Leonardo DiCaprio. It would be the “Titanic” of spaghetti-western. And while we regret that we will never get to see that film, we are also kind of glad that it never got made.
Photo Source: Facebook/Will Smith