The Obamas are ready for their next venture: filmmaking. But before the famous family could start, we hear that Barack and Michelle Obama almost did a movie with Will Smith, but lost out on the chance to do so at the last minute. Needless to say, we’re devastated on what that collaboration could’ve been.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Obamas asked Smith to produce his upcoming biopic on Richard Williams — the father of Venus and Serena Williams — with the First Family’s production company, Higher Ground. In the end, THR reported that Smith turned down the offer, but his loss seems to be Denzel Washington’s gain. Per THR, Washington decided to collaborate with the Obamas on a different: an upcoming adaptation of August Wilson’s 1982 play, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom for Netflix, which the former POTUS and FLOTUS will serve as producers for.
The Obamas made a deal with Netflix to release movies under their Higher Ground banner in April of this year. They’ve been seeking projects that will inform, inspire and entertain. Their first release is the documentary American Factory.
The former President and First Lady have certainly been hanging out with some serious heavy-hitters. (They most recently went on a double date with George and Amal Clooney). Their Netflix deal is big news for a couple, who are transitioning from Capital Hill to Hollywood. According to those working with Obama at Netflix, the former POTUS is a joy to work with and has a lot of fun chatting with staff members.
But if you’re too bummed about this Smith-Obama news, have no fear. Though nothing is in the works now, Smith told James Corden during an episode of Carpool Karaoke in 2017 that he’d love to play the President in a biopic.. No one’s green-lit it yet, but there’s still time, right?