Will Smith cast as the Genie in live-action reboot of Aladdin

Will Smith cast as the Genie in live-action reboot of Aladdin

Will Smith has been confirmed as the Genie in the live-action reboot of 'Aladdin'.

The 48-year-old Hollywood legend's casting was announced at Disney's D23 Expo in California on Saturday (15.07.17), where it was also revealed that Naomi Scott, 24, will portray Princess Jasmine and newcomer Mena Massoud has been announced as Aladdin.

It's not yet known who will portray villainous Jafar, though 'Peaky Blinders' star Tom Hardy is said to be in the running as director Guy Ritchie is said to be a big fan of the 39-year-old hunk.

A source said previously: "Guy is a huge fan of Tom's work and securing him would be a major coup.

"There have been conversations and, although nothing is set in stone and things are subject to change, he's certainly one of Guy's favoured choices.

"It just depends on schedules whether he'll be able to sign up."

The British director is working on bringing Disney's classic 1992 animation back to the big screen along with Sean Bailey - head of motion picture production at Disney - and shooting was due to commence on the project in this month.

'Charlie and The Chocolate Factory' writer John August has penned the script for the musical movie, which is believed to be non-linear in its structure, something that is a hallmark of Ritchie's early work such as cult British crime romp 'Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels'.

Following the adventures of the street rat, the story is based on a Middle Eastern folk tale of Aladdin who is granted three wishes by a genie who is captive inside a magic lamp.

The original - which saw the late great Robin Williams voice Aladdin - won two Oscars for the music including Best Music and Original Song for 'A Whole New World'.

'Aladdin' is one of Disney's most beloved and successful classics earning more than $504 million worldwide and the characters are prominent at the company's theme parks.

It has also been turned into a hit stage show playing at theatres all over the world.

'Aladdin' is now set to start shooting in August.

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