Will Smith hung out with Zane Lowe on his Beats 1 radio show and dropped a few nuggets.
First, get ready for a return of Fresh Prince, as in DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, in 2016. Smith, who recorded a rap (his first time on the mic in 10 years) on Bomba Estereo’s “Fiesta” remix last week, shared that he has about 20 new tracks that he’s recorded and a few others that he’s “really… trying to get the ideas to come out right,” which he’s continuing to work on. “I’m shaking the rust off, knocking the dust off,” Smith told host Lowe.
He also added that he’s “pretty certain” there’ll be a DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince world tour in the summer of 2016. “I’m terrified,” Smith replied, when asked whether he was excited.
Second, he shared that the “Bad Boys 3” movie that’s long been in development is definitely coming, and should arrive a lot sooner than maybe we expected, given all the non-starts that came with every announcement over the last few years. Smith said that there’s a “very, very, very strong possibility that” we will be seeing a 3rd “Bad Boys” movie “within the next 12 to 18 months,” which would give it a release date of late 2016/early-mid 2017. Not that far away at all.
Last we updated you on the project, in June, Sony was in early talks with Joe Carnahan to re-write the script, as well as direct the film. Prior to that update, a year ago, Martin Lawrence (who we weren’t sure would be interested in returning for a 3rd film) revealed to Conan O’Brien on his late night show, that he spoke to producer Jerry Bruckheimer just prior to his appearance on O’Brien’s program, and that he was interested in coming back.
Screenwriter David Guggenheim (“Safe House”) was penning the script for the film at the time, which Joe Carnahan would rewrite, assuming he reached a deal with Sony. Will Smith doesn’t say anything further about the project, specifically who’s writing and/or directing it. But it does appear that Michael Bay, who directed the first two films in the franchise, will not be back to direct the third film.
I’d expect “Bad Boys 3” will be even bigger and *badder* than the last 2, which means that it might get expensive for Sony Pictures, with likely heftier salaries to pay (Smith and Lawrence will probably demand more money than they received many years ago for the first 2), and it may not even be worth it for the studio; unless they expect it to do really big numbers at the box office. And I don’t know if that’s a guarantee. I’m sure it’ll do well, but are Will Smith and Martin Lawrence still the box office draws they both once were, just a few years ago?
The first film, released in 1995, was cheap at $19 million. Will Smith certainly wasn’t collecting the kind of salary he would go on to command years later; and likely neither was Lawrence. It was a sleeper hit, earning over $140 million worldwide. The budget for the second film, released 8 years later, in 2003, increased 6-fold to a whopping $130 million!!!! That film grossed about $238 million globally. Not quite the profitable film that the first one was, but still a hit.
What would the budget for a third film be, and what kind of box office can be expected? Sony might opt to go leaner on this one, with a budget somewhere between $19 million and $130 million, with an expected box office take of somewhere between $140 million and $238 million globally. I wouldn’t expect superhero movie or “Fast & Furious”-like numbers. But I certainly could be wrong.
In essence, your guess is as good as mine.
Up next for Smith is the football drama “Concussion” which will be out in December.
Listen to the full interview with Zane Lowe below: