Will Smith wins Genie role in live-action Aladdin film
Former Men in Black star Will Smith is set to take on a role cherished by many, after it was announced that he will play Genie in the upcoming live-action Aladdin film.
Smith's casting was announced on Saturday morning at the D23 Expo, an exposition organised by the official fan club for The Walt Disney Company, D23.
The former rapper had been connected to the role for a few months but his casting was officially confirmed at the weekend.
The role of Genie had been played by Robin Williams in the 1992 animated film, with the movie's directors creating the character specifically for the late comedian.
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Smith will become just the third actor to take on the role on the big screen, following in the steps of Williams and Dan Castellaneta, the voice of Homer Simpson.
Disney also announced the casting of the film's other lead characters with up-and-comers Mena Massoud and Naomi Scott cast as Aladdin and Jasmine, respectively.
The new Aladdin film is one of many Disney live-action films based on successful animated movies, with live action versions of The Lion King, Dumbo and Mulan also set to hit cinemas in the coming years.
While filming is set to begin next month in London, Disney has not confirmed who will be cast in the role of the film's main antagonist, Jafar. A release date for the film is yet to be announced.