Guy Ritchie's live-action Aladdin might sound like a joke a late-'90s stand-up comedian might make, but it really is happening – which is actually pretty exciting.
After King Arthur flopped hard, Ritchie could do with a hit, and all the elements are in place to rejuvenate the director's career. All he has to do is deliver a great movie that Disney fans love. Easy!Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
We're going to be keeping a close eye on the project, so bookmark this page, because you'll need a friend like Digital Spy to stay on top of all the latest news.
Aladdin trailer: Watch it here!
Backed by a slower instrumental take on 'Arabian Nights', the teaser doesn't give away much, but shows us the cave of wonders and ends with Aladdin reaching for the fabled lamp – although the Genie is still being kept under wraps.
At least we got a look at Jafar's faithful parrot Iago.
We had to wait until February 11 for more footage from the remake and it brought with it our first look at Will Smith's blue Genie.
Aladdin cast: Who's in it?
Despite a casting call that seemed faithful to the character, the spectre of whitewashing did hit the project, when Tom Hardy was rumoured to be playing lead villain Jafar.
Ritchie had other problems – namely, finding his lead. But that turned out to be nonsense too, with Ritchie announcing his cast just days later.
Unveiled at the D23 Expo, it was revealed that Will Smith will play the Genie and we later learned that his take wouldn't just be replicating Robin Williams' performance, but would be "a little Fresh Prince, a little Hitch and a whole lot of attitude".
We got our first look at the new Genie and the "hip-hop flavour" he'll bring to the remake on December 19.DisneyDaniel Smith
The blue lamp version of the Genie is still being finished, but Ritchie has teased what we can expect to EW.
"I wanted a muscular 1970s dad. He was big enough to feel like a force — not so muscular that he looked like he was counting his calories, but formidable enough to look like you knew when he was in the room," he explained.
It was also confirmed that newcomer Mena Massoud will take on the lead as Aladdin and Naomi Scott was also announced as Jasmine.DisneyDaniel Smith Advertisement - Continue Reading Below Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
That last announcement didn't go down too well with fans, who took to Twitter to complain about a non-Arab actress being cast in such an iconic role. (Even though the original pan-Middle-Eastern story was first written down by a French author and set in China.)
Still, the Tom Hardy rumours were put to rest when Marwan Kenzari was confirmed as Ritchie's number-one choice for the lead villain.
Jafar's right-hand man was next on the cast-list. Hakim is head of the guards and a right piece of work, and thankfully Homeland actor Numan Acar seems well up to the job.
He took to Twitter to thank happy fans after he was cast, saying: "So great to have so many amazing supporters. You make my day. Love peace harmony for all of you."
"It's not whitewashing. The thing is that the garden should be filled with flowers of different kinds. If not, the garden is going to be very boring. So you're gonna go and see this beautiful garden with colourful flowers, and I just hope that you enjoy the journey," he said.
Negahban later told Digital Spy that the movie will "honour and respect" the culture of Aladdin's setting and characters.
There will be some new faces in the cast though.
Let's start with the good news – former Saturday Night Live star Nasim Pedrad joined the cast in one of the newly-created roles, as Jasmine's handmaiden Mara.
Now, the bad. Just when we thought they got over the whole whitewashing thing, the production made the bizarre decision to create another new character, in the shape of a white prince played by Billy Magnussen.Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Aladdin release date: When is it out?
Easy: it's due on
Filming officially wrapped in January 2018 as lead star Mena Massoud shared a behind-the-scenes snap on Twitter.
Aladdin songs: What will be in there?
Some fans wondered what kind of an adaptation Ritchie would make – he's never directed a musical before, so would his live action Aladdin still have songs? Of course it would.
"I think it'd be tough to not make [Aladdin] a musical," Ritchie said. "I've really just immersed myself into that project. So I'm still looking for cast members, we still haven't found exactly which direction we're going in."
And Disney knew just who to turn to for the songs as La La Land and >The Greatest Showman duo Benj Pasek and Justin Paul revealed that they were working with the legendary Alan Menken to put lyrics to his new original music.FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images
They later confirmed that this would include two new songs: one a song for Jasmine and another a duo between Aladdin and Jasmine.
Teasing the new songs, Naomi Scott said: "The song that Jasmine sings connects to everything about her arc, about her finding her voice. That’s what that song is about, it’s about not being shut down but being able to speak out, which I would say resonates.
"The other song is a lovely lullaby song, which comes more at the beginning of the movie."
As for 'A Whole New World', Mena Massoud has promised us that the movie's take on it is "magical".
Aladdin is released in cinemas on May 24.
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Source : https://www.digitalspy.com/movies/a845988/aladdin-2019-trailer-cast-release-date-genie/