The first pictures from Disney’s live-action Aladdin remake have arrived and there’s something very different about Genie.
The character, voiced by Robin Williams in the original 1992, is played by Will Smith in the new one but the photos, published by Entertainment Weekly, show him in pretty much human form.
However, those worried the cerulean Genie won’t be seen in the final version need not worry as apparently, they are still working on his floating lamp aesthetic.
That hasn’t stopped fans sharing their hilarious reactions
Idk why they got Will Smith as the genie looking like Shaq in Kazaam
— 👑 Kickin’ it like a football punt (@Sammy_Socialite) December 19, 2018
— ARTHUR MORGAN STAN ACCOUNT LOVES AQUAMAN (2018) (@_Rene_V) December 19, 2018
— 𝚆𝚎𝚜 𝙷𝚞𝚎𝚝𝚝 (@WesHuett) December 19, 2018
Others have defended the non-CGI approach to the Genie.
I've been seeing a lot of hate that #WillSmith isn't blue as the Genie.
People sit down.
Stop holding on to your childhood nostalgia. pic.twitter.com/u3gWTaRuFb
— Jempanada 🎄 (@jempanada3) December 19, 2018
Director Guy Ritchie says he wanted his Genie to have “a muscular 1970s dad,” look to him.
“Big enough to feel like a force — not so muscular that he looked like he was counting his calories, but formidable enough to look like you knew when he was in the room,” he added.
Smith explained that he knew it would be a big task to differentiate his performance from the late Williams’ but believes his version will be a unique addition to the Disney family.
“I started to feel confident that I could deliver something that was a homage to Robin Williams but was musically different,” the actor says. “Just the flavor of the character would be different enough and unique enough that it would be in a different lane, versus trying to compete.”
“I think it’ll stand out as unique even in the Disney world,” Smith says. “There hasn’t been a lot of that hip-hop flavour in Disney history.”
The cover story also reveals the first look at Naomi Scott as Princess Jasmine who is said to be even more feminist in this version than the original animation.
“Jasmine is so resilient and independent in this version, she’s focused on things other than which boy she’s going to end up with,” Nasim Pedrad, who plays the new role of Jasmine’s best friend Dalia, says.
“She really wants to be a leader, and Dalia really supports that but at the same time wants to make sure she doesn’t get in trouble.”
Aladdin is in cinemas from May 24