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Roland Emmerich discusses Will Smith and Independence Day Resurgence

06.22.2015

Our own Chris Bumbray is currently visiting the set of INDEPENDENCE DAY RESURGENCE in New Mexico and seeing all kinds of cool shit, some of which he's been able to share and some of which is held under embargo. Today, Fox held a special live stream that had the cast and crew of the film onstage and talking about the long-awaited sequel with a Q&A session held towards the end. Naturally, the question of Will Smith being in the film was brought up, as many had anticipated seeing Smith show up as a surprise announcement to the cast. Unfortunately, that's not the case (or at least, it doesn't seem to be) and director Roland Emmerich addressed the topic, giving some insight into the direction they're going with Smith's character and how he plays into the sequel.

Check it out:

And here's the full response written out for those looking for the black and white:

Well, you know, at the very beginning I wanted to work with him and he was very excited to be in it, but then after a while, you know, he was just tired of sequels and he did another science fiction film, which was a father/son story [AFTER EARTH], so he opted out. I was first very disappointed, but then actually a couple friends told me that this could be a great chance to try something new and I said maybe I should. It took me three years to figure that one out, but actually in the end we figured it out.

And, now it's like a handover. But, the deal with the disappearance of Will Smith...I don't want to give it away, but in a very kind of respectful manner and he's still part of this universe, but it's mainly like kind of a little bit of a handover from the old generation to the new.

So, it looks like Smith is not likely to return and certainly not in a lead role even if he does. All that said, it sounds like Emmerich and co. have a firm plan on how to deal with his absence and an overall vision that carries the torch of the franchise without him. What do you think? Does an ID4 sequel need Smith or is it good enough to take flight without him?

INDEPENDENCE DAY RESURGENCE hits theaters on June 24, 2016.

 

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Source: JoBlo.com

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1:24PM on 06/23/2015
Guessing the son takes over and Smith's character died from the cigar smoking or maybe kidnapped by the aliens.
Guessing the son takes over and Smith's character died from the cigar smoking or maybe kidnapped by the aliens.
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8:41AM on 06/23/2015
The first one still holds up as one of the most entertaining summer blockbusters ever. I'm excited to see what this one holds.
The first one still holds up as one of the most entertaining summer blockbusters ever. I'm excited to see what this one holds.
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4:31AM on 06/23/2015
sooooooooooooo, what is the big reveal ?????? I don't get it
sooooooooooooo, what is the big reveal ?????? I don't get it
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1:13AM on 06/23/2015
That's a pretty cool title, at least it's not the typical cliched Rise, Dawn, Awaken or just a 2. Yea the movie doesn't really need Will Smith, plus they got the better characters back.
That's a pretty cool title, at least it's not the typical cliched Rise, Dawn, Awaken or just a 2. Yea the movie doesn't really need Will Smith, plus they got the better characters back.
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+1
11:38PM on 06/22/2015
I can not wait for this movie! And i dont give 2 shits that Smith isnt in this... it has Goldblum/ Pullman/ Spiner and Hirsh... thats all we need!

But it sounds like they are putting a positive spin on this, when news first came of Smith not coming back it was cuz he had to be the SOLE star of the film and wanted a ton of cash. Then After Earth hit and tanked but im sure his ego got in the way of him going to Emmerich to get his part back... so instead he went to my other most anticipated of
I can not wait for this movie! And i dont give 2 shits that Smith isnt in this... it has Goldblum/ Pullman/ Spiner and Hirsh... thats all we need!

But it sounds like they are putting a positive spin on this, when news first came of Smith not coming back it was cuz he had to be the SOLE star of the film and wanted a ton of cash. Then After Earth hit and tanked but im sure his ego got in the way of him going to Emmerich to get his part back... so instead he went to my other most anticipated of nextvyear: Suicide Squad... but with that, no one cares about Smith.. it is all about Leto's Joker and Robbie's Harley Quinn!
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12:02AM on 06/23/2015
your comment is all conjecture, but i dont get the "sole star" argument. that didn't stop will smith from doing MIB3 where josh brolin stole the show. actually... maybe that's why...
your comment is all conjecture, but i dont get the "sole star" argument. that didn't stop will smith from doing MIB3 where josh brolin stole the show. actually... maybe that's why...
9:10AM on 06/23/2015
Brolin was a supporting actor who stole the show... that is still Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones' franchise... but TLJ took a back seat in that movie, proving my point!

But whether it is conjecture, it is a true account of what was said a few years ago when news of a new ID4 was first announced!
Brolin was a supporting actor who stole the show... that is still Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones' franchise... but TLJ took a back seat in that movie, proving my point!

But whether it is conjecture, it is a true account of what was said a few years ago when news of a new ID4 was first announced!
11:33PM on 06/22/2015
People will wonder where is Will Smith. ID needs him. However if they don't use him they need some kind of star. The returning cast is not enough to make this movie successful.
People will wonder where is Will Smith. ID needs him. However if they don't use him they need some kind of star. The returning cast is not enough to make this movie successful.
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2:08AM on 06/23/2015
Goldblum, Pullman, and Hirsch are enough returning cast to warrant my attention.
Goldblum, Pullman, and Hirsch are enough returning cast to warrant my attention.
11:26PM on 06/22/2015

bring back Randy Quaid!

I think if the script is good they really don't need Will. There's plenty of places they can go with the script. They can just focus on different characters. The aliens are the important part, and they need to handle them with respect! Without the same aliens then I would say don't bother making a sequel. I still don't understand why they haven't brought back Randy Quaid. He would be great in this!
I think if the script is good they really don't need Will. There's plenty of places they can go with the script. They can just focus on different characters. The aliens are the important part, and they need to handle them with respect! Without the same aliens then I would say don't bother making a sequel. I still don't understand why they haven't brought back Randy Quaid. He would be great in this!
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11:44PM on 06/22/2015
You mean beside the fact that he died in the first one?

And beside the fact that he's batshit crazy?
You mean beside the fact that he died in the first one?

And beside the fact that he's batshit crazy?
1:02AM on 06/24/2015
there's no real proof that he died. His plane looked like it was destroyed, but could have easily just been taken into the alien ship. He could have survived and been held captive until he escapes, or he could have ejected before his plane was destroyed. I think having him escape, and then warn everybody that the aliens are coming back would be a cool premise!
there's no real proof that he died. His plane looked like it was destroyed, but could have easily just been taken into the alien ship. He could have survived and been held captive until he escapes, or he could have ejected before his plane was destroyed. I think having him escape, and then warn everybody that the aliens are coming back would be a cool premise!
11:15PM on 06/22/2015
They really do need Smith.
They really do need Smith.
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