Will Smith Reveals How 'Bad Boys' Almost Starred Different Comedy Legends

At an exclusive “Bad Boys 4” trailer release event, Smith shared that comedians Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz were supposed to be the film’s stars.

The “Bad Boys Ride or Die,” aka “Bad Boys 4” trailer, has hit these internet streets, and that means Detectives Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett are back together wreaking havoc. That also means the world gets to see two of the greatest sitcom comedians ever, Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, join forces for the 4th time. At an exclusive trailer release event at Sony Pictures, Smith revealed that the buddy cop action movie wasn’t even meant for him and Lawrence.

Smith said, “The original ‘Bad Boys’ were Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz.” These two top-tier comedians were the buddies that Hollywood wanted to put together. But as fate would have it, Martin got his hands on the script and changed history. 

Will Smith Says ‘One and Only Date’ With Pepa Had Him the ‘Most Terrified’ He’s Ever Been

Smith continued, “They had the screenplay before Martin got it. So Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz, that's who y'all would have been seeing; they were the original Bad Boys and then Martin took over the screenplay. So the version of the screenplay that he was pitching to me was written for Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz.” 

Lawrence shared that he wanted to tap Eddie Murphy for the role, but he cost too much. Lawrence’s sister convinced him to team up with a fellow big-name sitcom star, Will Smith. So then, Lawrence decided to meet with Smith to pitch him the movie. Smith said, “He was like, ‘Yeah, so you can't read the script, but I just need you to say yes. Come on man! Two of the biggest Black stars on television. If we do this together, we'll make it right. Don't worry about the script!’”

Needless to say, Smith said yes. Super producers Jerry Bruckheimer and Don Simpson signed on but were not impressed with the script Martin told Will not to worry about. Lawrence said, “When they first saw the script at our table read, they were like, ‘We ain’t doing this,’ and literally threw it in the trash.”

Smith knew their talent would make up for where the script fell short. He said, “The fact that we were on TV was the thing that made it…that we could take a screenplay that wasn't necessarily shaped for us because we were used to doing that tempo in television. You get a script on Monday that you can't do and then you work and you shoot at the end of the week. So we were used to ad libbing and creating and all of that, so we brought our TV energy to the set of ‘Bad Boys 1’.” And that energy has given us a franchise that is not only action-packed, but hilarious to boot.

“Bad Boys Ride Or Die” released their trailer on March 26th, and the movie hits theaters on June 7th!

Latest News

Subscribe for BET Updates

Provide your email address to receive our newsletter.

By clicking Subscribe, you confirm that you have read and agree to our Terms of Use and acknowledge our Privacy Policy. You also agree to receive marketing communications, updates, special offers (including partner offers) and other information from BET and the Paramount family of companies. You understand that you can unsubscribe at any time.