Quentin Tarantino Talks Django Unchained Casting

Don’t panic: Quentin Tarantino hasn’t re-cast his entire movie on a whim, he just wants to tell you about why he cast a certain actor in a role in the first place. That’s okay, isn’t it? Thought so. Especially since we’re all dying to know why Will Smith didn’t end up in as the lead in Django Unchained, given that he was originally rumored for the part.

Talking to Playboy, Tarantino had this to say on the whole Will Smith thing:

“We spent quite a few hours together over a weekend when he was in New York doing Men in Black III. I think half the process was an excuse for us to hang out and spend time with one another. It just wasn’t 100 per cent right, and we didn’t have time to try to make it that way.”

Kind of a vague explanation, though, isn’t it? There were a few stories floating when Jamie Foxx got cast instead with regards to Will Smith’s position as a family entertainer: a movie like Django Unchained, in which he would be required to shoot down people in cold bloody vengeance and use the “n-word” on a frequent basis, might’ve rocked the very souls of his current fanbase. Is that the “not 100 per cent right” Tarantino is talking about? We’d bet on it. Besides, there wasn’t a part for Will Smith’s kid in the movie, and that’s the sort of thing that Will Smith worries about now he’s got his very own child-shaped ATM.

As for eventually casting Jamie Foxx on in the role, Tarantino unveiled more details:

“I met six different actors and had extensive meetings with all of them, and I went in-depth on all of their work. Idris Elba, Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, M.K. Williams Tyrese. They all appreciated the material, and I was going to put them through the paces, make them go off against one another and kind of put up an obstacle course. And then I met Jamie and realized I didn’t need to do that. He was the cowboy… Forget the fact that he has his own horse – and that is actually his horse in the movie. He’s from Texas; he understands. …He understood what it’s like to be thought of as an ‘other.’”

When I first heard that Jamie Foxx had been cast in the role, I was a little shocked. But now I can’t imagine anyone else pulling that part together like he seems to be doing in the trailers: Foxx is rocking the perfect combination of innocence and badassery required to make that role work. So what we’re saying is, thanks for not taking the role Will Smith, and thank Jesus that Chris Tucker didn’t end up taking the lead. You’re only allowed to do movies with Jackie Chan, Chris, you know that. Now back to Brett Ratner’s house with you. Shoo.

Django Unchained is out on Christmas Day. In the meantime, check out our list of ten films you should see before it hits theatres.

Source: Total Film