What to Read Next

‘Django Unchained’: Jamie Foxx took lead intended for another star

Meriah Doty
Movie Talk
June 7, 2012

Now that the first trailer for Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained" is out (see below), we'll get you up-to-date on the facts.

Some have dubbed the film Tarantino's "Southern" -- a play on the fact the film's title borrows from 1966 Italian spaghetti Western "Django," includes Western film elements, but is set in the South. In the revenge-themed "Unchained," Jamie Foxx plays Django --a freed slave who becomes a bounty hunter and faces off with an evil plantation owner (Leonardo DiCaprio), all the while seeking the whereabouts of his slave wife Broomhilda (Kerry Washington).

Foxx, however, was not the first actor envisioned for the role. Tarantino originally wrote "Unchained" with Will Smith in mind. (One can imagine why Smith -- a major box office draw who attracts audiences of all backgrounds -- turned down the opportunity to play a character who expresses pleasure in getting paid to "kill white folks.")

[Photos: 'Django Unchained' movie stills]

Talks devolved and Foxx was eventually cast in the leading role. He recently said what drew him to the role:  "This is a love story. He's not trying to stop slavery. He's not trying to do anything but find the love of his life — which is like trying to find a needle in a world of haystacks."

Foxx and Smith are friends in real life and both appeared in 2001's "Ali," for which Smith was nominated for an Oscar. The two were later said to be vying for the role of President Barack Obama in a biopic -- but that never happened.

Foxx went on to win an Oscar for 2004's "Ray," in which Washington also plays his wife.

Here are more interesting details around "Django Unchained":

  • Tarantino has been courting DiCaprio for a while: He had written the role of one of the villains in 2009's "Inglorious Basterds" for him. It was the role of Hans Landa played by Christoph Waltz -- who is also in "Unchained" -- that eventually won him a best supporting actor Oscar. Perhaps DiCaprio is avoiding making the same mistake twice.
  • This is the first time DiCaprio has played a villain in a major motion picture. And in this one, he is said to be evil.
  • Brad Pitt, who too appeared in "Basterds," is said to have turned down many "juicy" roles in "Unchained." But don't count him out yet -- Harvey Weinstein says surprise actors are in store.
  • The film also stars Don Johnson (you heard correctly) and Samuel L. Jackson and opens on Christmas Day -- pitting DiCaprio against himself as he also stars in Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby," out the same day.

Watch 'Django Unchained' Teaser Trailer:

VA Mortgage Rates In 2016

VA Rates as Low as 2.75% (3.028% APR) 15 Year Fixed. Exclusive For Veteran & Military Takes 1 Min!

Banks Are Worried Homeowners Will Do This.

Homeowners are surprised and furious. If you owe less than $625,000 on your home, you better read this.

Powerful Tactical Flashlight Flying Off Shelves!

This new tactical flashlight was just released to the public and is flying off shelves in the United States. Limited supplies left, act quick!

How to Choose the Best Student Loans

The fun of summer vacation is often dampened by thoughts of student loan debts. See which loan is the best for you.

Insane Navy Seal Flashlight, should it be banned?

The Military has recently released technology that is now available to the public. Get yours before they run out - Limited Supply!

This Movie Deal Is Sure To Get Your Attention!

Get 4 Disney Movies For $1 With Membership. See Details. Exclusive Titles, Merchandise, Offers & Discounts. Plus, Free Shipping On Your Initial Order!

How Older Men Tighten Their Skin

Men, reduce the look of wrinkles, sagging skin and fine lines with this affordable and effective skin tightening treatment without leaving your home.

Starwood Credit Card

Earn 25,000 Bonus Starpoints®! Use toward Award Nights or Flights.

9 Cards for People Who Have Great Credit

What card offers up to 5% cash back? And which one offers 24/7 concierge service? See the best credit cards of 2016. Apply online, quickly & easily.

Read This Before You Buy Medigap Plan F

Plan F is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan option, but there's another plan you should consider.

Switch and save!

Switch to Progressive and you could save an average of $548.

Can you guess the stars by their heroic muscles?

So. Many. Muscles.

Help your customers on Facebook and Twitter.

Today's customers are social, so you should be too. Read this e-book to learn six things to consider as you plan your support strategy.

#1 Selling Community in Southwest Ohio!

New ranch and 2-story homes on wooded and walkout homesites. Bethel Schools. Low property taxes and 12 miles from WPAFB. Priced from $160s-$350s.