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[Movies] Will Smith Was Quentin Tarantino's First Choice For Django Unchained
Posted by Joseph Lee on 01.29.2013

In a new interview with Playboy, Quentin Tarantino revealed that Will Smith was his first choice to play the title character in Django Unchained. Here are highlights:

On how close he came to getting Will Smith: "We spent quite a few hours together over a weekend when he was in New York doing Men in Black 3. We went over the script and talked it out. I had a good time—he's a smart, cool guy. I think half the process was an excuse for us to hang out and spend time with one another. I had just finished the script. It was cool to talk to someone who wasn't guarded about what he was saying. He didn't walk away from it because he was scared of the material.It just wasn't 100 percent right, and we didn't have time to try to make it that way. We left with me saying, "Look, I'm going to see other people." He said, "Let me just see how I feel, and if you don't find anybody, let's talk again." And then I found my guy."

On who else he looked at: "I met six different actors and had extensive meetings with all of them, and I went in-depth on all their work. Idris Elba. I got together with Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, M.K. Williams. Yes. I talked with 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."

On why he picked Jamie Foxx: "There are a lot of reasons I could say, but the gigantic one is that he was the cowboy.Jamie understood the material. But mostly 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. We sat there talking, and I realized, Wow, if this were the 1960s and I was casting a Django Western TV show and they had black guys as stars of those in the 1960s, I could see Jamie on one of those. And that's what I was looking for, a Clint Eastwood."


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