Will Smith Explains Turning Down Django Unchained: ‘I Need To Be The Lead’

Will Smith is not keen on playing a supporting character – even if it means getting to work with Oscar winners Christoph Waltz and Quentin Tarantino.

The actor was approached to star in Tarantino’s “Django Unchained,” but when Will saw the size of the role – which Jamie Foxx ended up playing – he turned it down.

“Django wasn’t the lead, so it was like, I need to be the lead,” Will told Entertainment Weekly. “The other character was the lead!”

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The “other character” Will referred to turned out to be his role in “After Earth,” where he plays the lead in the sci-fi movie with son Jaden.

Prior to passing on “Django,” Will even asked Tarantino to alter the character’s screen time.

“I was like, ‘No, Quentin, please, I need to kill the bad guy!’” Will told EW.

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Despite leaving the project, which took home two Oscars this year (Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Screenplay), Will was happy to see the movie do so well.

“I thought it was brilliant,” he added. “Just not for me.”

“After Earth” hits theaters on June 7.

-- Jesse Spero

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