Will Smith Is Why It Took So Long To Make “Bad Boys For Life”

will smith bad boys
Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

Bad Boys For Life, the third movie in Will Smith’s wildly popular Bad Boys franchise, was first announced in 2008. As the project was developed, Joe Carnahan was brought in to direct. He was coming off directing Liam Neeson in The Grey and looked like an inspired choice.

In 2015, Carnahan gave up the job, leaving as both writer and director. The film looked dead in the water. The Smith vehicle proved it could float, though, and hired the Fallah brothers, who were most notable in the United States for directing two episodes of Snowfall together.

Now, with Bad Boys for Life set to come out this year, Carnahan is finally speaking out, admitting he left after working with Will Smith proved too difficult, “I just know myself, man. And I thought what we were doing at that point was the law of diminishing returns… this isn’t to throw shade at Will — it’s your face on the poster, it’s your name on the poster, you need to do things the way you want them done.”

He then added that leaving the project made him worry about his future, ” Harrison Ford, Tom Cruise, Will Smith, you find me a [expletive removed] in the modern era that’s walked away from movies with those guys and is still working in some capacity.”

Luckily, leaving the project didn’t end Carnahan’s career. He has a movie called Boss Level schedule for release in a few months.