‘Independence Day 2’ wasn’t as good without Will Smith, Vivica A. Fox says

"I really feel we missed out by not bringing Will Smith back,” Vivica A. Fox shared in a new interview.

Vivica A. Fox is speaking out about the sequel to “Independence Day” and Will Smith’s absence from the sci-fi film, People reports. 

“I really feel we missed out by not bringing Will Smith back,” Fox, 58, shared with AV Club in a new interview. 

Vivica A. Fox and WIll Smith
Will Smith and actress Vivica Fox pose backstage at VH1’s Big In 2003 Awards on Nov. 20, 2003, at Universal City in Los Angeles. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)

The actress portrayed Smith’s wife, Jasmine Hiller, in the 1996 original film and reprised the role 20 years later in 2016’s “Independence Day: Resurgence.”

“I just didn’t feel like it was good and it lived up to the first one,” Fox said about the sequel to AV Club.

“We had most of the original cast on, but I think the one true link that was missing to the success of ‘Independence Day 2’ was that Will Smith wasn’t there,” she continued.

As People reports, Fox and several of the cast members from the original film returned for the sequel, including Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum and director Roland Emmerich. Jessie T. Usher also starred as the son of Smith’s character Steven Hiller.

Fox told AV Club that she expected fans to react strongly to Smith not reprising his role.

“I was at the premiere and I was like … ‘Let’s see how the fans are gonna feel about this.’ And, sure enough, on Twitter, they blew me up!” said Fox.

Emmerich explained to Yahoo Movies UK in 2019 that Smith dropped out of the sequel to work on “Suicide Squad.”

“I just wanted to make a movie exactly like the first, but then in the middle of production Will opted out because he wanted to do ‘Suicide Squad.’ I should have stopped making the movie because we had a much better script, then I had to really fast, cobble another script together,” Emmerich explained.

After Smith withdrew from the project, Emmerich and his team had a short period of time to write a new script for the sequel.

“I’m proud of ‘Independence Day: Resurgence,’ but we had one problem: Will Smith decided while we were preparing, to drop out. That was a huge, huge blow to me,” Emmerich told The Wrap in 2022.

“I should have just said no, because all of a sudden I was making something I criticized myself, a sequel,” he said.

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