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‘We don’t support Will Smith. This feels like a cash grab’: Internet Divided Over Will Smith’s Return in ‘I Am Legend 2’ as His Fans Forgive Him for Chris Rock Oscars Slap

'We don't support Will Smith. This feels like a cash grab': Internet Divided Over Will Smith's Return in 'I Am Legend 2' as His Fans Forgive Him for Chris Rock Oscars Slap

For the lovers of zombie apocalyptic movies, there’s good news and bad news. Will Smith’s I am Legend is returning for that long-awaited sequel after all, but there’s a catch. The first film which was released in 2007 has found a story worth coming back to and producer Akiva Goldsman has been keen to pick up the project for a while now. Fans, too, have been receptive to the idea – almost unanimously even – until the 2022 Oscars Slapgate. But as the blueprints for the new story go public, those who had remained a devoted fanbase of Smith and his ’07 movie are now clashing over divisive opinions regarding the upcoming sequel’s plot.

I am Legend
I am Legend (2007)

Also read: I Am Legend 2: Will Smith To Return Alongside Michael B Jordan

Will Smith’s I am Legend 2 Welcomed by Clashing Sentiments

Even though the production of I am Legend 2 is good news, there are reasons to stand against the upcoming sequel to the ’07 film. According to recent reports, the film will pick up decades after the events of the original film and star Will Smith and Michael B. Jordan at the front and center of the unfolding story. Alice Braga’s involvement in this new narrative hasn’t been made clear yet. This specifically means that the sequel is set to canonize the previous film’s alternate ending as opposed to the original theatrical ending.

The Darkseekers
The Darkseeker Alpha

Also read: I Am Legend 2: Will Smith Gets Yet Another Multi-Million Dollar Franchise Lifeline as Director Francis Lawrence Confirms Sequel Plans are Moving Along

The plot of I am Legend follows Smith’s Dr. Robert Neville wading through a post-apocalyptic world, looking for a cure for the Darkseekers, and sacrificing himself, in the end, to protect that cure and ensure the survival of humanity. However, for the sequel, producer Akiva Goldsman has been keener to adapt the storyline of the original 1954 novel by Richard Matheson which takes the cataclysm a step beyond the norm by pushing humanity to the brink of monstrosity in order to survive in a world overrun by vampires.

“I’m obsessed with The Last of Us, where we see the world just post-apocalypse but also after a 20-30-year lapse. You see how the earth reclaims the world, and there’s something beautiful in the question of, as man steps away from being the primary tenant, what happens? That will be especially visual in New York. I don’t know if they’ll climb up to the empire state building, but the possibilities are endless.

We trace back to the original Matheson book, and the alternate ending as opposed to the released ending in the original film. What Matheson was talking about was that man’s time on the planet as the dominant species had come to an end. That’s a really interesting thing we’re going to get to explore. There will be a little more fidelity to the original text.”

The sequel, due to its contentious plot, is now faced with the same hot and cold treatment that its leading man has been receiving for the better part of 2022. And even though the mass clamoring surrounding the Bad Boys actor has mostly calmed down with time, many still refuse to allow a platform and an agency to Will Smith due to his actions on the night of March 27th, 2022.

Fan Response to I am Legend Sequel Starring Will Smith

Will Smith set to return for I am Legend sequel
Will Smith set to return for the I am Legend sequel

Also read: After Being Straight Banned for 10 Years by the Oscars, Will Smith Gets Ready To Make Big Bucks in Another Lucrative All-American Event

The audience has been waiting for a follow-up to the story of Will Smith’s zombie-fighting doctor for over a decade and a half now. But the uncertainties of Hollywood, coupled with Smith’s intermittent retirement from acting over the decade since then has allowed the movie to collect dust on the shelves of the Warner Bros. studio.

However, Smith’s career trajectory has suddenly taken a massive deviation from its well-defined path to the top and even though the A-lister still accords the respect of fans and colleagues from around the globe, he has become debatably more bankable because of the sympathetic sensationalism of his presence in the industry since the past year.

Further details about the sequel’s release date have not been disclosed yet and production of the film is set to begin sometime later this year. If the film does stick close to the idea of the 1954 novel, considering the praiseworthy reception to HBO’s The Last of Us, the sequel might do well to explore a radically nihilistic outcome by portraying humanity surviving on the fringes of horror and extinction.

I am Legend is available for streaming on HBO Max.

Source: Twitter

Written by Diya Majumdar

It's 2023 and Diya Majumdar's social life is defined by a 365-day binge-marathon of films and television shows. Having graduated with honors in literature from Miranda House, she now has more than 1000 published articles on Fandomwire, and her passion and profession both include dissecting the world of cinema. She happens to be a liberally opinionated person with an overbearing love for Monet, Edvard Munch, and Van Gogh, and hardly anything fascinates her more than painting exact replicas of all their troubled works – in oil, of course.