Shining, Shimmering, Splendid.
Disney’s next live-action remake (there’s four that comes out this year), Aladdin, is hitting cinemas this week. Directed by Guy Ritchie, the movie stars Mena Massoud as Aladdin, Naomi Scott as Princess Jasmine, Marwan Kenzari as Jafar and Will Smith as the Genie.
While most of us grew up watching the original animated classic, it was said that we can expect something fresh and new with this new version. Brush up on these facts before seeing the movie this Thursday:
Slumdog Millionaire’s Dev Patel and Rogue One’s Riz Ahmed were all considered to play Aladdin.
Sir Patrick Stewart was originally offered to voice Jafar in the 1992 original but turned it down. He has now campaigned to be in the remake, but the role eventually went to Marwan Kenzari.
Will Smith recorded his version of ‘Friend Like Me’ on the first day he met with the composers of the movie.
Mena Massoud was born in 1992, the year when the animated Aladdin was released.
Director Guy Ritchie isn’t known for making children’s films, but he eventually agreed to do Aladdin. He said that the original movie touches on the same street hustler theme that’s always present on his movies, and plus he wanted to make a movie for his five children.
At one point, Jim Carrey was in the running to play the Genie.
Alan Tudyk voices Iago, and this role adds to a long list of movies he’s done for Disney. This includes Wreck-It Ralph, Big Hero 6, Zootopia, Frozen, Moana and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
Early rumors reported that Tom Hardy was being considered to play the villain Jafar.
Lea Salonga, who plays Princess Jasmine’s singing voice in the original movie has expressed excitement about the remake, telling fans that she ‘can’t wait’ to see it.
Will Smith has had reservations before playing the role of Genie, which was famously portrayed by the late Robin Williams. He eventually accepted the role, saying that he’ll be portraying Genie that’ll honor Williams’ legacy while adding his own unique take on it.
This will the second of four live-action Disney remakes opening this year. The first was Dumbo last March, with The Lion King opening in July and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil in October.
[Thanks to IMDB for these facts]
Disney’s Aladdin opens this Thursday across all cinemas in the UAE.