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Aladdin (2019)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Jake Lipson, Nov 2, 2017.

  1. Message #121 of 136 Dec 27, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018
    Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Producer

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    Another new photo of Naomi Scott (Jasmine) and our first look at Navid Negahban as the Sultan:

    https://movieweb.com/aladdin-2019-princess-jasmine-photo-naomi-scott/

    Speaking of Naomi Scott, here from YouTube is a single she released earlier this year. It's so pop-oriented that it's difficult to tell how she'll sound as Jasmine because Jasmine is going to require a different style.

     
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  2. Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Producer

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    Alan Menken did an interview with a newspaper in Phoenix, where the touring production of the Aladdin Broadway musical is about to open. But, of course, they asked about the live-action film, too. Here are his quotes specifically about that.

    The whole interview at the link is worth a read.

    https://www.azcentral.com/story/entertainment/arts/2019/01/26/q-a-alan-menken-remaking-aladdin-pasek-and-paul/2668465002/
     
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  3. Message #123 of 136 Feb 10, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2019
    Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Producer

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    A new TV spot aired during The Grammys.



    I'm more pumped for this movie than anybody else I know. But to me, the Genie looks terrible. I'm hoping it works in the context of the movie, but I actually preferred the photos of Will Smith from Entertainment Weekly where he was featured as a human. Those were like the Broadway design for the Genie, and I know that works because the Broadway show makes it work. This CGI version of him looks....frankly, terrifying in all the wrong ways.

    Visually, the rest of the clip looks great, I think. But...yeah. Yikes.
     
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  4. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    I think he just blue himself.

    Holy crap does this look like a train wreck. Cinderella, The Jungle Book, and Beauty and the Beast were soulless cash grabs, but at least they were competently made films with expert craftsmanship. This looks like the public domain straight-to-Redbox live action adaptation of Aladdin, not the Disney authorized and produced live action version.
     
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  5. Message #125 of 136 Feb 10, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2019
    Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Producer

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    I liked Beauty and the Beast and The Jungle Book more than you did, and I really desperately want Aladdin to be good because the original is my favorite movie of all time. But I've got to agree with you on this. I'm not sure what they are thinking with the Genie being depicted in this way. He looks like an alien that Will Smith would fight in Men in Black, with CGI that dates to the '90s when Smith was in that movie.

    This clip, to me, is proof that what works in 2D animation won't always work in live-action (or CGI for that matter.) The Broadway production of Aladdin totally reconceived the Genie and did so brilliantly to work within the context of a live stage setting. Instead of reconceiving it again and doing it in a way that works for this movie, which is what they should have done, it feels like the live-action film team said, "Well, he's gotta be blue, and he's gotta look the same, so I guess CGI?", but the end result just looks creepy and weird. I think the visual design of the rest of what we've seen so far is beautiful -- but the Genie is going to dominate the conversation, per usual. The hopeful side of me says, well, he's only in this for a few seconds, and maybe it will work better when we're seeing the full performance within context of the complete movie. But as far as first impressions go, this one was bad. I want to love this so badly, but they're making it hard.

    Even what he's saying doesn't make sense. Why would Aladdin know who the Genie is? Within the world of the movie, genies are rare. There's a reason Jafar has been searching for years to find the Cave of Wonders. Certainly someone of the lower class wouldn't be aware of the existence of magic because it's not common. Therefore, it's unreasonable for the Genie to expect Aladdin to know who he is or how the wishes work.

    On another note, Jafar seems pretty young from that clip of him. Part of what makes him a terrifying villain is that he's a much older man trying to get with Jasmine. It won't be as creepy if they're closer in age. Again, we'll see how it goes in context of the whole movie, but that's just what leapt out at me as a first impression.
     
  6. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    Wow. That’s harsh.

    I enjoyed all three.
     
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  7. Sam Favate

    Sam Favate Lead Actor

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    I think the clip looks good. As for Smith's Genie, in the first film you had Robin Williams doing his thing, and now it's going to Will Smith's thing. For better or worse, Smith's common movie persona will be Genie.
     
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  8. JQuintana

    JQuintana Screenwriter

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    If they start filling the movie with any rap crap, I'm out. I also agree the look of Genie is bad bad,
     
  9. Message #129 of 136 Feb 11, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
    Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Producer

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    From that clip, it's not Smith's persona I have the problem with so much as the actual design of the character that I think looks creepy.
     
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  10. tempest21

    tempest21 Stunt Coordinator

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    Amen! While I didn't find Will Smith's dialogue funny, it just looked too creepy seeing the actual image of Genie. I was laughing. Not because it was funny. But, because of how awful Will Smith looked as the Genie. I just don't see this being a hit for Disney. The original animated classic was a huge hit among fans because Robin Williams had enormous box office potential but also, I believe, because William's face wasn't plastered as the Genie. I expected to see a CGI Genie without Smith's face.

    If Will Smith is expecting for this movie to re-ignite his flailing career, then, he's betting on the wrong horse.
     
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  11. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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  12. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    His appearance didn't bother me much, though I was expecting something more than just "blue Will Smith". It was kind of underwhelming.
     
  13. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    Me too. He looked a little chubby too.
     
  14. Message #134 of 136 Feb 11, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
    Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Producer

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    Although the Genie's look in the new TV spot is worrisome to me, I still want to love this film. The animated film is my favorite movie of all time, so I really want the remake to be awesome and I'm trying to remain optimistic.

    On that note, I noticed that Disney is going to be working with Dark Horse to publish a graphic novel related to the new film called "Four Tales of Agrabah." It seems like it is going to be a prequel or side story or something, rather than a straight-up adaptation of the movie. The synopsis says:

    Release date is April 30, which is a while before the movie on May 24.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1506712673/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00__o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    Since this is only $10.99 and I'm curious, I pre-ordered it.

    Edit: Here's a Hollywood Reporter story on the graphic novel which I found. Apparently they're doing one for Dumbo as well. https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/aladdin-dumbo-graphic-novels-coming-dark-horse-1173306.

    Amazon also has a listing for "The Art and Making of Aladdin" by Emily Zelmer which is about the new live-action film. That one comes out on May 21 and retails for $45. Since that is more of a major investment, I'm not planning to buy it before I see the movie, but would definitely consider it provided that I like the movie and that they discount the price a bit.

    https://www.amazon.com/Art-Making-Aladdin-Emily-Zemler/dp/1683836820/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=art+and+making+of+aladdin&qid=1549928734&s=books&sr=1-2-catcorr

    And here is a pre-order for the "Aladdin Live-Action Novelization" coming April 9. I think I'll pass on this one, as it is likely to give away every detail of the new film in a way that a side-story graphic novel won't. The Disney novelizations are usually targeted to very young readers too. But I remember getting a ton of these while I was growing up, so it's good that today's kids will have this option if they want it:

    https://www.amazon.com/Aladdin-Action-Novelization-Disney-Group/dp/1368037119/ref=sr_1_16?keywords=disney+aladdin&qid=1549929855&s=books&sr=1-16

    And there's the Disney Aladdin Deluxe Replica Journal written by Rachael Upton. I'm not sure what this one is, but it's coming on April 16 and is listed as being for ages 6-8. I probably don't need this one.

    https://www.amazon.com/Disney-Aladdin-Deluxe-Replica-Journal/dp/0794442323/ref=sr_1_16?keywords=disney+aladdin&qid=1549930075&s=books&sr=1-16

    It's interesting that all of these books are up for order now, but no pre-order is yet available for the new soundtrack, which is the merchandise item for the remake that I want the most, since there are new songs.
     
  15. JimmyO

    JimmyO Second Unit
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    Jake, are you ready for Will Smith's new rap version of "A Whole New World?"

    :P:drum::P
     
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  16. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    I actually enjoyed the live action Beauty and the Beast quite a bit. I just meant that Disney's motivation for making these isn't artistic and meaningful; its motivation is soulless and corporate. They are products coming off of the assembly line, on a schedule that creates value for shareholders.

    That product can be good product or it can be bad product. I think Beauty and the Beast was good product. I'm very much afraid that this Aladdin will be bad product.
    It's worse than that; it looks like Will Smith with a bad 1960s "Star Trek" makeup job. They could have achieved that by filming Will Smith against green screen and then using coloring tools to swap out his skin tone for smurf blue.

    If you're going to go with CG, show us something you can't achieve by any means other than CG.

    It's not just the Genie, though; when the cave is collapsing around Aladdin, look how cheap and fake the environment looks.
     
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