It's no secret that Independence Day: Resurgence wasn't quite the sequel most of us were hoping for. It just so happens that director Roland Emmerich feels the same way, as he has shared some serious regrets about his much-maligned follow-up to the original 1996 blockbuster classic. Unfortunately for all of us, things could have gone a very different route, had it all gone according to the original plan.

Roland Emmerich is currently promoting his new movie Midway, a big-budget World War II epic that will take him far away from the realm of alien invasions and sci-fi. During a recent interview, he was asked about 2016's Independence Day: Resurgence, which proved to be a much-maligned flop. As Emmerich tells it, some last-minute changes heavily compromised the movie he wanted to make. Here's what he had to say about it.

"I just wanted to make a movie exactly like the first but then in the middle of production Will (Smith) 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. I should have just said no because all of a sudden I was making something I criticized myself: a sequel."

That all seems to add up. The presence, or lack thereof, of Will Smith in the sequel was felt, and the way they tried to fill that hole in the movie we got does feel like a scramble in the rewrites. There were some interesting ideas, such as some aliens being left on Earth, explored in the sequel, that were surrounded by what one might call less-than-interesting ideas. This isn't to say that the original script and the return of Smith as Steven Hiller would have made the sequel leaps and bounds better, but who knows? Maybe it would have. It certainly couldn't have hurt.

The real kicker here is that Will Smith decided to go make Suicide Squad instead. Suicide Squad proved to be a critical disaster and, at best, divisive amongst DC fans. So it's not as though the actor went on to make some sort of brilliant masterpiece or anything like that. But, at the time, it's easy to see why Smith thought taking on the role of Deadshot in a major comic book movie franchise seemed like a better idea than making a sequel to Independence Day 20 years after the fact.

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Independence Day: Resurgence currently carries a very poor 29 percent critical approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, to go with an equally brutal 30 percent audience score. The sequel also dramatically underperformed at the box office, bringing in just $389 million worldwide, working against a huge $165 million budget. Considering the original Independence Day made $817 million back in 1996 on a budget of just $75 million, that's particularly brutal. This news comes to us via Yahoo.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb
Ryan Scott