Is the Independence Day sequel – delightfully named Independence Day 2 – even worth doing if Will Smith isn’t involved? Sure, he’s started doing some pretty naff stuff with his son Jaden, but he was the original, and we can’t imagine July 4th aliens without him. Roland Emerich – who is returning to direct the sequel – let it be known that Smith would cost too much to return, but he plans to continue with the sequel nonetheless.
“Will Smith cannot come back because he’s too expensive, but he’d also be too much of a marquee name,” he said. “We have like maybe half of the people that you… would know from the first film [in the script] and the other half people who are new.”
How it expensive is too expensive though? Well, it was claimed that Will Smith wanted $50 million for a two-film deal – that’s pretty expensive, really. But, people will scream, ‘you’ve got all the money you’ll ever need, and Independence Day helped you secure a future as a big budget, Hollywood actor, can’t you just come back for the love of it?’ People might say that, but Smith probably won’t listen.
The 1996 original, starring Bill Pullman and Jeff Goldblum as well as the Fresh Prince star, was a huge hit when it came out. It smashed the box office, gathering over $800m worldwide and, capitalizing on the national holiday, has gone down as a sci fi classic. And we don’t think any sequel will be right without its original star.
Will Smith in his cool red suit
After Earth didn't go down too well...