This morning in The Express, I saw a blurb about Will Smith turning down the role of Marvin Gaye. (Jesse L. Martin I could see. Will Smith not so much...Apparently there may be more than one biopic in the works. This happened with the dueling Janis Joplin biopics being in the works a few years ago too. Phil Morris might be good to, but I'm not sure if he can sing...that's the only drawback...)
I couldn't understand why he'd refuse that and say yes to an Independence Day sequel. (The way I see it a sequel can is either a very good idea or a very bad idea. Very seldom is there an in between.)
I think Mr. Smith decided to stick with the Independence Day sequel, because he doesn't see Marvin Gaye as a positive enough role model to portray (He takes that very, very, seriously. It's a very admirable personal quality to have, but as an actor, it limits him).
My other thought as far as Mr. Smith's refusal goes is, he's a little more flexible than I think, but he doesn't want to go the places this role might take him. I have heard story upon story of acting fathers that would "bring a role home" with them.
Another possibility could be the money, but I think he's taken ensemble stuff or pay cuts/percentages before, although I'm not certain (He's not an actor I follow too closely. ).
It'll be interesting to see who does decide to work with Cameron Crowe on this, whether it moves to another director, or whether the project never materializes at all. [As I type this, yet another possibility has occurred to me. Maybe Will Smith subscribes to the same school of thought Denzel Washington and Spike Lee do (ie. a Black director would be able to tell the story more accurately. ]