Will Smith was born on 25th September, 1968 in (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States of America) is an American actor and musician whose personality and quick wittiness helped him segue from rap music to a successful and prosperous acting career.
Smith was given the nickname (Prince Charming) in high school, which he changed to “Fresh Prince” when he started his “musical career” to represent a more hip-hop sound. In the year 1981, he forged an association with schoolmate and DJ Jeffrey Townes. They started out as DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, and in the year 1986, they released their first single album, “Girls Ain’t Nothing But Trouble,” followed by the album Rock the House.
Forbes named Smith the most bankable celebrity on the planet. As of 2014, 17 of the 21 films in which he has played a prominent part have grossed more than One Hundred Million ($100 million) worldwide, with five of them grossing more than $500 million. His films have grossed $6.6 billion at the global box office as of 2014. For “Ali” and “The Pursuit of Happyness”, he garnered Oscar nominations for Best Actor.
Overbrook High School was Smith’s alma mater. Smith did not turn down a scholarship to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), as generally claimed; he never applied to college since he “wanted to rap.” Smith claims he was accepted to MIT’s “pre-engineering [summer] program” for high school students, but he never showed up. Smith claims that “My mother, who worked for the Philadelphia School Board, had a buddy who worked at MIT as an admissions officer. I had good SAT scores and they needed black students, so I could have certainly gotten in. However, I had no intention of attending college.”
In favor of “Wild Wild West,” he turned down the part of Neo in “The Matrix” in 1999. Despite the disappointment of “Wild Wild West,” Smith has stated that he has no regrets about his decision, claiming that Keanu Reeves’ performance as Neo was superior to what Smith could have achieved, despite statements to the contrary in interviews after the film’s release “On Wild Wild West, I made a mistake. That may have been more effective.”
Will Smith extended into movie with “Where the Day Takes You”, buoyed by his small-screen success in the year 1992. In the cinematic adaptation of “John Guare’s” popular stage drama Six Degrees of Separation, he played the lead role for the first time in the year 1993. Nevertheless, the action comedy-thriller Bad Boys in the year 1995 proved to be a watershed moment in his film career. While the film received mixed reviews, it grossed more over (one hundred million)$100 million worldwide, demonstrating Smith’s star power. In 1996, he starred in Independence Day, the year’s highest-grossing film.
The science-fiction comedy “Men in Black,” for which he also sang the Grammy-winning title song, was a box office blockbuster the following year, and sequels were released in 2002 and 2012. Smith also recorded his debut solo album, “Big Willie Style”, in 1997, which featured the song “Gettin’ Jiggywit It,” and “Willennium” two years later.
Following his role as an enigmatic golf caddy in The Legend of Bagger Vance in 2000, Will Smith went on to play Muhammad Ali in the biopic Ali in 2001, for which he received an Academy Award nomination; a cop from the near future in I, Robot in 2004; and a “date doctor” helping a romantically inept man find love in Hitchcock’s in 2005.
The next year, he starred in The Pursuit of Happiness, earning him a second Oscar nod for best actor for his portrayal of a single father who overcomes difficulties. Smith featured in I Am Legend in 2007 as a scientist who may be the last human on Earth after an outbreak. Smith starred in Hancock in 2008 as a superhero striving to change his reputation, and in Seven Pounds in 2008 as a guy seeking penance after killing seven people in a vehicle accident.
Smith later starred in the “science-fiction epic After Earth” in 2013, which was based on an idea he devised, alongside his child (son)“Jaden”. In the 2015 thriller “Focus”, Will Smith played a scam artist and the doctor who found the epidemic of chronic traumatic encephalopathy among NFL players. He starred as the assassin “Deadshot” in the action “thriller Suicide Squad” and as a bereaved parent in the “drama Collateral Beauty” in 2016. He played as a cop in the Netflix action picture “Bright the following year,” which is set in a Los Angeles populated by humans and supernatural creatures. Smith was then cast in the family comedy “Aladdin” as the genie in 2019.
Will Smith later starred in the sequel to his 1995 “blockbuster picture”, “Bad Boys for Life” in 2020. Smith starred as the father of tennis legends Serena and Venus Williams in the movie “King Richard in 2021”. Will Smith won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance. However, an incident during the ceremony overshadowed his victory. Smith took offense when comedian Chris Rock made a joke about his wife, actress Jada Pinkett Smith he married in 1997. He stormed the stage, smacked Rock, and swore at him. Later, Smith expressed regret to “Rock”.
Smith’s recording career continued with the albums Born to Reign in 2002 and Lost and Found in 2005, however neither of them were as successful as his earlier efforts. Smith has worked as a producer on several films in the early twenty-first century, including those in which he acted, and co-created and produced the sitcom All of Us (2003–07) including his wife. He hosted the Earth documentary TV series “One Strange Rock” in 2018. Will authored with Mark Manson, Smith’s book, was published in 2021.