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The Genie is a jinn and the deuteragonist of the franchise. He was portrayed by Robin Williams in the first film. After a contract dispute between Williams and the Walt Disney Company, Dan Castellaneta continued to voice the Genie throughout the direct-to-video feature The Return of Jafar, as well as the television series, before Williams reprised the role for the final installment, Aladdin and the King of Thieves, as well for the character's own mini-series, Great Minds Think for Themselves. Castellaneta voiced the Genie in the Kingdom Hearts series of video games by Square Enix and Disney Interactive Studios. As well as largely driving the plot in the first movie, the Genie serves as comic relief in each of his appearances. He is shown to have shapeshifting abilities, which allow for many and varied sight gag. The Genie's supernatural disposition permits him to break the fourth wall, as well as parody real-life people and popular culture completely outside of the boundaries of the fictional universe in which he is contained. Williams is responsible for most of these because he improvised many of the lines in the film.
The Genie first appears in Aladdin, where he is released from a magical oil lamp by the titular character in the collapsed Cave of Wonders. After he reveals that he can grant three wishes, he is duped into freeing Aladdin and Abu from the cave without using a wish. At a faraway oasis, the Genie is asked by Aladdin what he would wish for. The Genie admits he would wish for freedom, since he is a prisoner to his lamp and must follow the orders of the lamp's master (Aladdin). After accepting a promise from Aladdin that Aladdin would use the third wish to set the Genie free, the Genie grants Aladdin his first wish: making him a prince so he can marry Jasmine. The Genie goes into hiding after leading a parade to the Agrabah palace. The Genie is released again when Aladdin is shackled, gagged, and thrown off a cliff into the ocean by Jafar's guards. The Genie rescues Aladdin as the second wish after liberally interpreting Aladdin's nodding head. Later, Genie began to lose his respect when he sees that Aladdin has to break his promise by using the wish for Aladdin himself.
The Genie's lamp is later stolen and delivered to Jafar by Iago, making Jafar Genie's new master. The Genie has no choice but to grant Jafar's first and second wish to become Sultan of Agrabah and the world's most powerful sorcerer. He is then made a slave with no purpose in life but to entertain the sadistic Jafar by tormenting the former Sultan. During the final fight between Aladdin and Jafar, the Genie is forced to grant Jafar's final wish to become an all-powerful Genie. However, the fulfillment of this wish causes Jafar to be imprisoned in a lamp of his own, which the Genie hurls into the desert, freeing Agrabah from his tyranny. While initially more than willing to sacrifice his freedom in order to allow Aladdin to be with Jasmine, Aladdin decides to live up to his original promise and uses his final wish to free Genie from his lamp's power. The now-free Genie leaves Agrabah to explore the world.
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