This ‘Aladdin’ Star Hasn’t Had a Single Audition Since the Live Action Movie Premiered
Disney is known for making stars — especially with their big-budget live-action films. This past spring, the studio debut their highly anticipated live-action film, Aladdin starring Will Smith as Genie, Naomi Scott as Princess Jasmine and relative newcomer Mena Massoud as the titular character.
Though the film didn’t quite live up the ’90s cartoon version of the beloved story, it was still delightful. Obviously, Smith has been a mega-star for the past three decades and fans praised his role as Genie. Instead of directly biting from the late Robin Williams’ iconic performance — The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air alum made the story his own. Likewise, Naomi Scott has continued to star in big blockbusters like Charlie’s Angels. Unfortunately, not everyone in the cast has been propelled to superstardom from Aladdin.
Massoud — has just confessed that his career is at a standstill following his performance in Aladdin.
Mena Massoud hasn’t had a single audition since ‘Aladdin’ debuted
Though Aladdin has crossed an astounding $1 billion at the box office– Massoud’s phone hasn’t exactly been ringing off the hook for roles and auditions. “I’m kind of tired of staying quiet about it. I want people to know that it’s not always dandelions and roses when you’re doing something like Aladdin,” he told The Daily Beast. “‘He must have made millions. He must be getting all these offers.’ It’s none of those things. I haven’t had a single audition since Aladdin came out.”
In the past — other actors of color have talked about the blatant lack of opportunity — despite being in major or award-winning films. Obviously Hollywood is still struggling with diversity and inclusion. “I feel like I’m going to be overlooked and underestimated for a long time because I am a young actor,” Massoud added. “I’m an up and comer in the sense that I’ve been doing this for 10 years, but to a lot of people, Aladdin‘s the first thing they’ve seen me in. So I think I’m going to be viewed that way for a long time. I’m going to have to work at chipping away at that.”
This is why Mena Massoud’s career hasn’t skyrocketed
Unfortunately, Hollywood doesn’t always know what to do with actors of color. “There’s always a wild card or two when you’re casting,” Massoud explained. “I’m usually the wild card. In a room of Caucasian guys, a director might be like, ‘OK, let’s see, like, two guys who aren’t. And maybe they’ll be the wild card choice.”
Thankfully, he’s not letting the relentless grind deter him from his work. “I just learned to stay grounded and you know, to not have expectations of how things are gonna go,” he said. “You kinda got to be fluid and move with the wave and I’m learning that now, you know, so learned a lot from [Will Smith].”
Will Mena Massoud star in a live-action ‘Aladdin’ sequel?
Up next, Massoud will be seen on Hulu’s Reprisal — a role he booked prior to the premiere of Aladdin. However, there is still whispers that an Aladdin sequel might be in the works.
“I don’t think it will be Return of Jafar, but I think there’s a possibility of a sequel, yes,” Massoud revealed at New York Comic-Con. “I think they should do one just about the animals. Like, Abu, Rajah, Iago and the carpet all get together. Throwing it out there!”
It should be interesting to see if things have changed now that Massoud has spoken out.