Will Smith replaces Ben Affleck in Focus, Kristen Stewart drops out
Will Smith is the man and there’s no denying that. Other than maybe Tom Cruise, Will Smith is the most consistently successful box office star in the world. So he’s earned the benefit of the doubt in most cases, so we shouldn’t be too quick to second guess his recent decisions. But I’m not too crazy with anything I’ve seen from AFTER EARTH and with news hitting today that he’s going to be stepping in for Ben Affleck in FOCUS, I’m left scratching my head. If you recall, FOCUS was originally set up to star Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone (which sounds incredible), but then they dropped out and Ben Affleck stepped in as a con-man that teaches a young Kristen Stewart the trade, but when they become romantically involved, they end up going their separate ways only to be reunited years later.
And yes, the idea of Ben Affleck and Kristen Stewart romantically involved on camera was enough to turn off just about everyone, so Ben Affleck dropped out almost as fast as he became attached and reports now surface that Kristen Stewart has also left the project. But now Will Smith is set to bring his multiple trailers to the Warner Bros. lot for writers/directors Glenn Ficarra and John Requa. The film still needs the every important female lead and I’ll go on record now that Zoe Saldana is going to be asked to star in the film at some point. WB seems intent to get this thing moving quickly, so with Will Smith attached, expect to hear more casting announcements soon. (THR)