Willard Carroll "Will" Smith, Jr. is an American actor, producer, and rapper, who has enjoyed success in television, film, and music and achieved modest fame as a rapper under the name The Fresh Prince.
Smith is best known for his television role as a fictionalized version of himself in the NBC sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air from 1990 to 1996. He has ultimately starred in numerous blockbuster films, including Bad Boys and its 2003 sequel, Independence Day, the Men in Black franchise, Ali, I, Robot, Hitch, The Pursuit of Happyness, I Am Legend, Hancock, Seven Pounds, and After Earth. He also received Academy Award for Best Actor nominations for his roles in Ali and The Pursuit of Happyness. Additionally, he notably voiced Oscar, the protagonist of DreamWorks' Shark Tale.
For Disney, he played Robert Clayton Dean in the 1998 spy-thriller film, Enemy of the State. He also made an appearance in Disneyland's 35th Anniversary Celebration and the 2004 Miramax film, Jersey Girl. He was mentioned in the Jonas L.A. episode "Wrong Song". He also portrayed the Genie in the 2019 live-action adaptation of Aladdin, and voiced Lance Sterling in Fox/Blue Sky Studios' Spies in Disguise.
His song "Brand New Funk" was featured in Ride.
In the 2022 Academy Awards, he slapped Chris Rock when he told a G.I. Jane joke to his wife (and Rock's Madagascar cast mate), Jada Pinkett Smith and then warned him to stop making fun of her, not to mention using a F word. As a result, he is unable to attend the Oscars for a decade.
- Smith was originally in talks for the role of Captain America in Captain America: The First Avenger, but in the end, Chris Evans was cast instead.
- He was originally offered the role of Holt Farrier in Tim Burton's Dumbo but decided to star in Guy Ritchie's Aladdin as the Genie, with Colin Farrell taking the role of Farrier instead.
- By coincidence, both the live-action adaptations of Dumbo and Aladdin were released simultaneously within 2019, just few months apart (as Dumbo was released in March, while Aladdin was released in May).
- "Will Smith cast as Genie, but no sign of Aladdin in live-action remake". entertainment.ie (July 12, 2017).
- A Complete List of All the Actors Originally Considered for Roles in the Marvel Universe at Pajiba
- Fleming Jr, Mike (February 10, 2017). "'Dumbo’ A No-Go For Will Smith", Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved on March 31, 2019.