Hey! I hope you’re having a great Memorial Day weekend! It’s cold here today (go figure, in sunny So Cal), so we headed to the movies to see Disney’s “Aladdin.” I guess everyone had pretty much the same idea because the theater was packed! We saw the film in EPEX (better than IMAX I guess? It was awesome…70 foot screen and the sound was unbelievable.
So, did I like the film? I loved it! The settings, colors, costumes, music were all amazing. I’m not really a Will Smith fan so I wasn’t sure how good he would be in the role of the genie. He was actually really good and did a great job of taking parts of the Robin Williams genie and making them his own. There was a lot of excitement in the film and I think both adults and children will love it. Here are some fun facts about the production of the film…skip the spoilers at the bottom if you haven’t seen it yet! I’d love to hear what you thought if and when you see it.
- Frank Welker reprises his roles as Abu and the Cave of Wonders from the original film, making him the first cast member from a Disney animated feature to play the same character(s) in the live-action remake.
- Sir Patrick Stewart campaigned for the role of Jafar. He had previously turned down the role in Aladdin(1992) and has regretted it ever since.
- Smith said that he was “terrified” while playing the character, but that “[he] found a lane that pays homage” to Robin Williams’ performance in the original film, while still making the role “[his] own thing”.
- When Aladdin and Genie are first speaking in the desert, Carpet can be seen in the background making a sand castle in the form of the Disney logo castle.
- This film has been homaged in two previous Disney live-action films: The Jungle Book (2016) the genie’s lamp was spotted in King Louie’s temple. Beauty and the Beast (2017) a model of Agrabah castle appeared during “Be Our Guest”.
- During the scene when Aladdin asks Genie to “make him a prince”, Genie produces an actual prince in the background. The prince is dressed in colors of pink & lime green, the same colors in the title logo & a nod to Will Smith‘s comedy The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990). So, the Genie created the Fresh Prince for Aladdin.
- Guy Ritchie was primarily interested in doing the film because it was the Disney story he was closest to: “My stories are really about street hustlers. That’s what I know how to do. And Aladdin is a classic street hustler who makes good.” He also decided to do a children’s film for his five children.
- There were rumors that Gilbert Gottfried would be reprising his role as Iago from the original franchise. However, it was later confirmed that Alan Tudyk would be taking up the role.
- When the Genie shows Aladdin a floating scroll, the drawing contains Aladdin, the Genie and the Sultan in their animated forms from Aladdin (1992).
- This is Will Smith’s first time doing a live action movie with Disney.
- Tom Hardy was rumored for the role of Jafar.
- After being cast as Jafar, Marwan Kenzari was being called Hot Jafar.
- The Genie begins and ends the film as telling the fairy tale to his children. In Aladdin (1992), a peddler provided a prologue to the film, though he didn’t appear at the ending. However, an alternative ending featured the peddler revealing himself to be the Genie.
- The Genie and his family live on a lamp-shaped boat. The boat represents Genie’s own wish for freedom and to go anywhere he wishes, and its shape represents his previous residence.
All trivia courtesy of IMDB