Disney has released a clip of Will Smith's Genie singing "Prince Ali" from Aladdin, and not everyone is feeling the magic. Adapted from the original animated film, the song takes place after Aladdin asks Genie to make him a prince, so that the poor thief can better woo Princess Jasmine. Genie conjures up a grand entrance for the phony prince "Ali Ababwa," introducing him to the citizens of Agrabah with a lavish parade. In the 1992 movie, the song is a huge, energetic production number, with Robin Williams's Genie shape-shifting and performing magic tricks throughout. Guy Ritchie's live-action version is shot more like a straightforward music video, and while some fans are ready to genuflect and show some respect, others seem extremely underwhelmed.
First, here's the "Prince Ali" clip, courtesy of IGN.
In response, many fans of the original have been asking: why isn't Will Smith's genie doing more?
I hate how little Will Smith Genie does in the scene. In the original, Genie is constantly shifting from place to place, morphing into kids and men and women to hype up Prince Ali. Was it so difficult to use some of your cg budget into making Will smith actually use his powers?— Vincent Xerez (@StarMech_V) May 14, 2019
Disney: hey Will time to do Prince Ali— Jesse Inocalla (@jinocalla) May 14, 2019
Will Smith: yeah can I do "ha ha"s and "woo"s mid-song
Disney: it's not really what we-
Will Smith: haha woo https://t.co/UdUQLWTOuF
"🎵Now try your best to stay calm🎵" YEAH NOT A LOOMING ISSUE BRO GOT THAT COVERED— Glen Weldon (@ghweldon) May 14, 2019
The clip has received negative comparisons to the Broadway stage version of Aladdin, which is, of course, also live-action.
it's not like it's impossible for this to be done live-action??? the Broadway version got it right and they can literally only use a small theater stage.https://t.co/F4AKy6GdgD— 頴娃ガールズ応援団長あり吉ԅ( ˘ω˘ԅ) (@nanairomiso) May 14, 2019
Aladdin doesnt look great 😔 prince ali looks SO boring & slow & autotuned & i dont know how it can fail this hard when its an incredible broadway show (for live action reference)— kate (@katedriver) May 14, 2019
if anyone has seen any number from the Broadway musical of Aladdin, you'd see how it still works as a theatrical counterpart of the animated film—lively, & magically entertaining.— abigael 🌹 (@abigael_d) May 14, 2019
what i don't understand is why they didn't just go down THIS ROUTE for the live-action!!!!
Seeing that clip of will smith singing Prince Ali made me feel like this: pic.twitter.com/uWHO77eLFy— Scarlett (@ScarlettKingdom) May 14, 2019
I like Will Smith, and have fond childhood memories of Aladdin, but this just doesn't work. https://t.co/osBrcjc1lQ— Sister Outrider (@ClaireShrugged) May 14, 2019
prince ali was prob the only reason I would go see aladdin in cinema and now I've seen that clip and... eh. I'm good— the saf... stole a FREIGHTER? (@Wanderlustin) May 14, 2019
Still, "Prince Ali" has plenty of defenders.
What's the cool thing that Twitter is hating today?— Pronounced Tricky (@TrickEBot) May 14, 2019
*plays Prince Ali trailer*
Me: oh, that was pretty cool!
My two cents on this whole Prince Ali thing pic.twitter.com/B5dnsRbAkG— Austin Michelson (@aus_mich) May 14, 2019
Here's one detail that Muslim Disney fans are appreciating: The lyric "Brush up your Sunday salaam" has been changed to "Friday salaam," to reflect the actual Islamic holy day.
Ok I just realized the new #Aladdin movie changed the lyric from "Brush up your Sunday Salaam" to "Brush up your Friday Salaam" because Muslims' holy day is Friday and this detail means I now have to go out and support this movie https://t.co/rDPejjiZVS— Meha Ahmad (@Meha) May 14, 2019
Not going to lie, I'm happy to see some representation. Familiar looking surroundings and clothing to my culture. Also, very happy that they changed the Sunday Salaam to Friday Salaam! https://t.co/YnUQ85aE0Q— Dr. Zara (@_copperpoet) May 14, 2019
Last week, Disney released the video for Zayn Malik and Zhavia Ward's closing-credits version of "A Whole New World," which overall received a much warmer reception from social media.
Aladdin opens in theaters on May 24.
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