Back before we knew Roland Emmerich wanted to blow up the White House in every movie he makes, there was Independence Day, the 1996 patriotic classic where aliens invaded the world. A sequel to the film has been confirmed for a while, but now Emmerich has revealed that Independence Day 2 will be without the original film’s star, Will Smith.
Since the project was announced, there’s been a lot of speculation over whether Smith would be involved. After all, Independence Day was the film that propelled him from rapper/goofy sit-com actor to the major A-lister he’s become today, and it seems like about half the films that Smith is in involve him fighting aliens. But now, Emmerich is saying that Smith is both too expensive and too big of a name for the project. He also said that roughly half the cast that we’ll see in the sequel will be from the first film, with the other half consisting of fresh faces.
Just how expensive was Smith going to be? It was rumored a few years ago that he was asking for $50 million to appear in the sequel. Compare that with the original, where he was given a mere $5 million for his troubles.
Even though Emmerich had no problem elaborating on Smith’s absence, he’s still keeping plot details to himself. Perhaps some of those details will come to light after James Vanderbilt (The Amazing Spider-Man) finishes putting the final touches on Dean Devlin’s original script.
There’s hope that this sequel will be the first of two films, tentatively titled ID Forever, Part I and Part II.
Independence Day 2 is slated to hit theaters on July 3rd, 2015, until then, you’ll have to get your Emmerich fix by checking out White House Down which hits theaters this weekend.
What do you think of Will Smith not joining the film? Are you disappointed that he isn’t involved? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.