‘Bad Boys 4’ new as Will Smith and Martin Lawrence Return

The sequel will be the first installment of the franchise since Smith’s slap controversy.

The Bad Boys are coming back. A fourth installment in the “Bad Boys” action franchise is in pre-production at Sony Pictures, it was announced Tuesday.

The series’ original stars, Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, announced the new installment in the franchise via posts on social media, which showed the two reuniting for filming on the project. The currently untitled film will see Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, who directed 2020’s “Bad Boys for Life,” return as directors, with Chris Bremner writing the script. Series producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Doug Belgrad, and Chad Oman return to produce along with Smith for Westbrook. Lawrence, James Lassiter, Mike Stenson, Barry Waldman, and Jon Mone will executive produce the project.

Created by George Gallo, the “Bad Boys” action franchise focuses on Mike Lowrey (Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Lawrence), two detectives in the Miami police department’s narcotics division, as they take on major cases and fight drug rings. The first two films were released in 1995 and 2003, and were helmed by Michael Bay. Released in January 2020, 17 years after the first sequel, “Bad Boys for Life” debuted to generally positive reviews and was a financial success at the box office, grossing $426.5 million at the worldwide box office. The film was the third largest January release of all time, the highest-grossing film in the franchise, and the fourth biggest film of 2020, albeit partially because of the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on the film industry.

After the financial success of the third film, another sequel was reported to be in development at Sony. However, following the controversy over Smith’s altercation with Chris Rock at the Academy Awards in March, production was halted. The film will be the second starring Smith to release after the incident, following last fall’s “Emancipation,” a slavery drama directed by Antoine Fuqua.

Aside from “Bad Boys for Life,” El Arbi and Fallah are best known for their work as directors and executive producers on the Disney+ Marvel series “Ms. Marvel.” The two also directed and co-wrote the feature film “Rebel,” which premiered last year at the Cannes Film Festival. In addition, the two were the directors on “Batgirl,” a DC superhero film starring Leslie Grace, which has since been shelved by Warner Bros. Discovery.

Smith is repped by CAA. Lawrence is repped by UTA. Waldman is repped by CAA. El Arbi & Fallah are represented by CAA, Entertainment 360, Ken Lambrechts Artist Management, and Jackoway Austen.

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