The studio had considered Riz Ahmed and Dev Patel for the title role, but instead wants an unknown in the lead role. Disney’s criteria is for an actor in his 20s, of Middle-Eastern or Indian descent, who can sing and dance. But as Heat Vision reports, “the search has dragged on, with Disney and Ritchie having to go back to the drawing board multiple times”.
Taking time over casting isn’t a bad thing, of course, it’s just it’s one in this case with a knock-on. Start of production has been pushed back to early August, and there are still candidates Disney is considering for its new Aladdin. It’s just there isn’t one they’ve all settled on yet.
The further knock-on is Disney and Ritchie can’t lock down the rest of the cast until they work out who everyone else will be playing against. Will Smith is set to play the Genie, that much is known. But whilst Naomi Scott and Tara Sutaria are in the running to play Jasmine, both are in limbo until Aladdin is found.
More on the movie as we hear it…