When the first official images of Will Smith as the Genie in Disney’s live-action Aladdin remake made their way online back in December, many fans were upset to see that the actor didn’t have blue skin, prompting Smith himself to take to social media to clarify that his character will still be blue in the actual movie.
Sure enough, the new trailer for Guy Ritchie’s film finally shows us the fully CGI’d version of the Genie, complete with his unnatural skin tone, and wouldn’t you know it, the internet is more skeptical than ever, with the Twitter response suggesting a mixture of disappointment and terror:
— Carpe Dayum (@sebbyskywalker) February 11, 2019
It turns out that Will Smith’s #Aladdin Genie will haunt my nightmares
— Rebecca Iannucci (@rebeccaiannucci) February 11, 2019
Will Smith as the Genie in Aladdin … I’M LOSING MY MIND 💀 pic.twitter.com/i2FUStNrXD
— tony stark in space (@carxlinv) February 11, 2019
— MasBun🍙🐝 (@NeonEffectr) February 11, 2019
— Craig Terrell, Jr. (@CraigTheBishop) February 11, 2019
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One entertaining trend that Smith’s Genie seems to have inspired is a wave of viewers attempting to describe just what they’re looking at, with the design prompting a variety of pop culture comparisons, from Avatar to Arrested Development:
— King Lovatic 👑 (@imyahitchiker) February 11, 2019
— Help me (@IGuessWeAre1) February 11, 2019
— Michael Tannenbaum (@iamTannenbaum) February 11, 2019
— Jay Washington (@MrJayWashington) February 11, 2019
— Tyler Duke (@tylersduke) February 11, 2019
To some extent, you have to wonder whether the problem here is the specific design of the new Genie, or just the basic idea of trying to adapt the Genie from the 1992 Aladdin to live-action. After all, was there even the slightest chance that a blue Will Smith wasn’t going to look at least a little ridiculous?
That being said, while the reception to the new Genie hasn’t been especially flattering, there’s certainly still time for Disney to convince filmgoers that the design works within the context of the movie. To make another Avatar comparison, it’s easy to forget how even the blue aliens of that eventual megahit were the subject of a lot of derision before the pic was released, and we all know how big that feature turned out to be. Regardless, we’ll see if Aladdin can win over doubters when the film hits theaters on May 24th, 2019.