Will Smith was originally offered the lead in Quentin Tarantino's Oscar-winning film Django Unchained and turned it down — not because of a scheduling conflict like he initially claimed, but because it wasn't all about him.
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"Django wasn't the lead, so it was like, I need to be the lead. The other character was the lead!" Smith told Entertainment Weekly, referring to Christoph Waltz's bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz, for which he ironically won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. (Waltz was initially campaigned in lead along with Jamie Foxx, who played Django.)
Smith said he even begged Tarantino to make Django more central to the film before eventually parting ways with the project. "I was like, 'No, Quentin, please, I need to kill the bad guy!"
Still, Smith is a huge fan of the film, which also won Tarantino the Best Original Screenplay Oscar. "I thought it was brilliant," he said. "Just not for me."
Do you think Smith should've played Django?