Will Smith, Everything About The Charming Star
Will Smith made the leap from successful rapper to Hollywood A-lister by first appearing on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” then starring in blockbusters like “Independence Day,” “Men in Black,” and “Ali.”
Will Smith: Who Is He?
Will Smith and Jeff Townes began their hugely successful rap career as DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince when they first met when Will was 16 years old. Smith spent six seasons as the lead of the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air before becoming a Hollywood A-lister with the 1995 films Bad Boys and Independence Day (1996). Since then, he has starred in hit movies including Men in Black (1997) and Hitch (2005) and received Oscar nods for the roles he played in Ali (2001) and The Pursuit of Happyness (2005). (2006). Smith received praise for Concussion (2015) as well before making a comeback with Suicide Squad (2016).
Smith was given the name Willard Carroll Smith Jr. on September 25, 1968, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to parents Caroline and Willard C. Smith, who ran a refrigeration business. Despite his family’s adherence to the Baptist faith, he was raised in a rigorous Catholic household and attended the demanding Our Lady of Lourdes school. Later, he went to Overbrook High School.
In the multicultural melting pot that was his West Philadelphia neighbourhood, Orthodox Jews and a sizable Muslim community coexisted. Smith was a good student who was known for his quick wit and charming nature, which helped him avoid trouble and earned him the moniker “Prince.”
At the age of 12, Smith started rapping, imitating characters like Grandmaster Flash while infusing his rhymes with a comic quality that would eventually become his signature. At the age of 16, Smith and Jeff Townes first connected at a party. As a result of their friendship, DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince were formed.
Career in Music
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince started making music while they were teenagers, but they avoided the gangsta rap style that was being developed on the West Coast by acts like N.W.A. Middle America considered The Fresh Prince’s clean, swear-free raps about adolescent obsessions comfortable and enjoyable. “Girls Ain’t Nothing But Trouble,” the duo’s debut record, became popular in 1986. Rock the House, their debut album from 1987, peaked at number 200 on the Billboard 200, making Smith a millionaire at the age of 18. Smith’s early success eliminated any considerations of going to college.
Early on, it was claimed that Smith had declined a scholarship to Boston’s prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), but Smith later refuted the claim in an interview by saying: “A friend of my mother’s who worked for the Philadelphia School Board and was in charge of admissions at MIT. I definitely could have gotten in because I had quite excellent SAT scores and they needed Black students. But I had no plans to attend college.”
He’s The DJ, I’m The Rapper, an album by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince, helped them maintain their popularity in 1988. The album, which received the first-ever Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance, featured the radio-friendly hits “Parents Just Don’t Understand,” “Brand New Funk,” and “Nightmare on My Street.” And In This Corner…, which continues the duo’s ascent to fame, was released in 1989.
Movies and TV Shows
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
Two years later, Smith started making the transition to acting. NBC hired Smith to appear in a sitcom about a street-smart boy from Philadelphia who moves in with stuffy relatives in the upscale Los Angeles suburb of Bel-Air, drawing on his experiences with budding popularity. A big hit that lasted for six seasons, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air played on his rapper identity and occasionally featured his friend Towne.
Smith and Towne persisted in making music during this time, and the albums Homebase from 1991 produced the successes “Summertime” and “Ring My Bell.” Code Red, their final album released as a group in 1993, is known for the song “Boom! Shake the Room.”
Where the Day Takes You and Six Degrees of Separation
Smith started a second movie crossover while still filming The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. A critically lauded lead in Six Degrees of Separation was followed by small parts in the comedies Made in America (1993) and the drama Where The Day Takes You (1992). Smith played a street-smart gay hustler who bilks his way into affluent circles, holding his own alongside Donald Sutherland, Stockard Channing, and Ian McKellen.
With his subsequent movie, Bad Boys (1995), Smith took his first steps toward superstardom. He collaborated with comedian Martin Lawrence in the high-budget cop movie, departing from the Black-cop-white-cop formula that had been so successful for Beverly Hills Cop and the Lethal Weapon series. The two Black leads found popularity right once, and Smith, who played the sophisticated woman killer to Lawrence’s clown, was recognised as leading man material.
The part Smith played in the acclaimed science fiction film Independence Day (1996) solidified his status as a significant player in Hollywood and the go-to actor for summer blockbusters. His humorous skills easily translated into the snappy one-liners that all action heroes need to be able to utter while slaying their foes. He played a pilot leading the counterattack against invading extraterrestrial forces.
Men in Black and Enemy of the State
In his subsequent smash, the comedy sci-fi action movie Men in Black, Smith once more battled aliens (1997). Smith, who was playing Tommy Lee Jones’ new hire opposite the veteran actor, ate up the screen. The theme song was rapped by Smith, and its appearance on his solo album Big Willie Style in 1997 increased the success of the multi-talented actor. The sleek conspiracy thriller Enemy of the State (1998), which was the next big hit, received Smith a nomination for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture.
Wild Wild West and The Legend of Bagger Vance
With the release of Wild Wild West, a sci-fi cowboy Western starring Kevin Kline, the successful run came to an end in 1999. Although the movie didn’t do well at the box office, the song Smith wrote for it ended up being a hit on his 1999 album Willennium. His second major role was as the caddie to Matt Damon’s awkward swinger in the 2000 golf drama The Legend of Bagger Vance.
“Ali,” an Oscar nomination
Smith had the chance to recapture his swagger on the big screen with the 2001 biopic Ali, which was based on boxing icon Muhammad Ali. Smith gave the performance of his life in his role as the charismatic boxing legend, going to unusual efforts to train and discipline himself to match the character’s athleticism and ego. Despite a record-breaking opening day, the movie did poorly at the box office, but Smith’s performance was good enough to earn him his first Academy Award nomination.
Men in Black II, Bad Boys II, and ,I Robot
Smith returned to his roles in the following sequels, Men in Black II (2002) and Bad Boys II (2003). Although neither was a dud, neither was as successful at the box office as its forerunner. Smith then transitioned to I Robot in 2004 while continuing the sci-fi action concept. Smith played a futuristic officer who was investigating a robot murder and fighting off an insurgency of robots in the Isaac Asimov adaption. With American box office receipts of almost $144 million, the movie did well.
The Pursuit of Happyness and Hitch
Smith used his charmer image in the 2005 romantic comedy Hitch, where he played a dating coach who advised unlucky boys on how to approach women. The theme tune was written by Smith as well, and it appeared on his 2005 album Lost and Found. Hitch was a huge smash, and in 2006 it was followed by another film that was equally popular with critics and consumers: The Pursuit of Happyness (2006). Alongside his real-life son Jaden, Smith enthralled audiences as the single parent who must start over in his role. For his portrayal, he was nominated for a second Best Actor Academy Award.
I Am Legend
Smith fought bloodthirsty vampires in the 2007 film I Am Legend, a remake of the Omega Man movie starring Charlton Heston. The movie proved a big hit both domestically and abroad.
Men in Black 3, Seven Pounds, and Hancock
Then, for the films Seven Pounds (2008), about a guy who seeks to transform the lives of seven individuals, and Hancock (2008), in which he played an alcoholic anti-superhero, Smith assumed the twin roles of actor and producer. He also contributed to the production of The Secret Life of Bees and Lakeview Terrace, two further movies that were produced that year.
After taking a break, Smith made a comeback to the big screen in 2012 with Men in Black 3. He then acted alongside his son Jaden in the critically panned science fiction film After Earth as a military commander. Then he appeared in the movie Winter’s Tale as a cameo as Lucifer (2014).
Suicide Squad, Concussion, and Focus
The 2015 heist thriller Focus, which also starred Margot Robbie, gave Smith his next major leading role. He received a Golden Globe nomination for his performance as Dr. Bennet Omalu in the sports drama Concussion, which he played in later in the year. In this role, he fought to raise awareness about head injuries suffered by NFL players.
Smith’s most popular movie since 1996’s Independence Day, Suicide Squad, which he starred in, was released in 2016. In the drama Collateral Beauty that same year, he also had a more solemn role as a father who loses his little daughter. Although a sequel, Bright (2017), received harsh criticism from critics, moviegoers reacted more favourably to the urban fantasy crime film.
Gemini Man, Bad Boys for Life, and Aladdin
Smith declared in February 2019 that he would not be participating in the Suicide Squad 2 sequel. Around that time, a commercial for Guy Ritchie’s live-action rendition of Disney’s Aladdin, which went on to gross over $1 billion worldwide, introduced him as a wisecracking Genie. The next film was Ang Lee’s Gemini Man, in which Smith performed a double role as a 50-year-old assassin tasked with killing a 23-year-old version of himself with the use of digital technology.
Alongside Tom Holland, the A-lister voiced super-agent Lance Sterling in the animated Spies in Disguise to end the year, and in Bad Boys, for Life to start the new year, he will return to his popular cop-buddy franchise.
Smith has had two marriages. Willard Smith III, popularly known as Trey, was born in 1992 as a result of his brief first marriage to Sheree Zampino in 1992. Since 1997, he has been wed to the actress Jada Pinkett Smith. Their daughter Willow was born in 2000, while their son Jaden was born in 1998.
Smith has contributed to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign and leans liberally ideologically. Every year, Smith is known to take his mother on vacation, generally to the Canyon Ranch spa in Tucson, Arizona. Smith enjoys playing video games and playing chess.
Will Smith’s wealth made him the highest-paid actor.
The Will family invested a lot of money to fulfil their love for pricey cars. Bentley Azure, Cadillac Escalade, Mercedes GL450, Ford Mustang, and Mayback 57s are among the automobiles in Smith’s fleet. No trip that Will Smith and his wife have ever had can be categorised as being inexpensive.
The Smiths family also made $100 million in global real estate investments. His mansion in Calabasas is valued at $42 million, according real estate. He and his wife reportedly spoiled their three children Willow, Jaden, and Trey with some of their millions, according to reports. His son Jaden owns a 6000 square foot, $4 million property that was just bought in 2016.