Update: This news is now confirmed by Deadline. Jamie Foxx got the job.
A couple of weeks ago Aaron reported that Will Smith was the frontrunner for the lead role in Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming film Django Unchained. He would play Django, a freed slave who seeks revenge on the plantation owner that is still holding his wife captive. At the time, reactions seemed mixed on whether or not Smith would make a decent lead for a Tarantino flick. Clearly his involvement would make the film instantly bankable, but his star power might also provide an unwelcome distraction as well. Now this week, for better or worse, it sounds like Smith is no longer in the running, and according to reports, Oscar winner Jamie Foxx may very well have landed the role instead. But if this turns out to be the case, would it be an improvement or a serious step down?
The scoop comes courtesy of former Creative Screenwriting Magazine editor Jeff Goldsmith, who sent out the following update via Twitter:
“Will Smith is out! Inside sources tell me that Tarantino has chosen Oscar winner @iamjamiefoxx to play Django!”
While you may wonder how Goldsmith could possibly have access to sources inside Tarantino’s camp, he did correctly predict the involvement of both Will Smith and Leonardo DiCaprio from these same sources just a few weeks ago. Adding further credibility to this rumour, Idris Elba, who was also in the running for the lead role, has just signed on to star in Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim instead. It’s a bit unfortunate, considering that I would have liked to see Elba in the role, but I suppose he may not have been a big enough name to carry the film.
Given the choice I would much rather see Will Smith in this movie over Jamie Foxx, but I suppose Foxx does have a little more versatility in his acting. I will certainly take him over Chris Tucker any day, although you never really know what to expect when it comes to casting in a Quentin Tarantino movie. What do you think, are you happy with the choice of Jamie Foxx to play Django? Does it make you more or less excited to see Tarantino’s next film?