Smith's best notable television role was that of William "Will" Smith (his namesake role) in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. In his blur work, his notable roles accommodate Agent J in Men in Atramentous and Men in Atramentous II, Muhammad Ali in Ali, as able-bodied as his role in the blockbuster Independence Day and added afresh as Chris Gardner in The Pursuit of Happyness with his son Jaden Smith and as Robert Neville in I Am Legend with his babe Willow Smith.
He is additionally one of alone three actors in the history of blur to accept seven afterwards US$100 amateur blockbusters, the two added actuality Tom Cruise and Tom Hanks.
Early activity and education
Will Smith was built-in and aloft in West Philadelphia and Germantown in Northwest Philadelphia, the son of Caroline (n�e Bright), a academy ambassador who formed for the Philadelphia academy board, and Willard Christopher Smith, Sr., a algidity engineer. He was aloft Baptist. His parents afar back he was thirteen. Smith's absorbing and sly address in academy resulted in the appellation "Prince", which eventually angry into the "Fresh Prince". While still in his teens, Smith began rapping and eventually began accommodating with Jeff Townes (a.k.a. D.J. Jazzy Jeff), whom he met at a party. He abounding Overbrook Aerial Academy in West Philadelphia. D.J. Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince was built-in with Smith administration the rhymes and Townes administering the ability of bond and abrading � the aggregate was a pop and hip-hop hit during the 1980s and aboriginal 1990s.
While it is broadly appear that Smith angry bottomward a scholarship to appear Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Smith denied this in a Reader's Digest interview, stating, "My mother, who formed for the Academy Lath of Philadelphia, had a acquaintance who was the admissions administrator at MIT. I had appealing aerial SAT array and they bare atramentous kids, so I apparently could accept gotten in. But I had no ambition of activity to college." This is corroborated in a Wired account area he states he never activated to MIT. Despite the above, back Smith appeared on Inside the Actors Studio, he declared that he was accepted to the "pre-engineering program" at MIT.
Smith started as the MC of the hip-hop duo DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince, with his adolescence acquaintance Jeffrey "DJ Jazzy Jeff" Townes as turntablist and ambassador as able-bodied as Ready Rock C (Clarence Holmes) as the animal exhausted box. The leash was accepted for assuming humorous, radio-friendly songs, best conspicuously "Parents Aloof Don't Understand" and "Summertime." They acquired analytical acclamation for acceptable the aboriginal anytime Grammy in the Rap class (1988). He had a bandage in "Voices That Care", a 1991 Gulf War song by a celebrity group.
Smith was advancing defalcation when, in 1990, the NBC television arrangement active him to a arrangement and congenital a sitcom, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, about him. The actualization was acknowledged and launched his acting career. Although he fabricated a notable affecting blur admission in Six Degrees of Separation while still actualization in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Smith's blur career took off with his role in the associate cop activity blur Bad Boys (1995) forth with co-star Martin Lawrence.
After The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air concluded in 1996, Smith began a acknowledged abandoned music career while accompanying starring in a alternation of films. The aboriginal two films were badly acknowledged summer blockbusters: Independence Day (1996), in which he played a assured and assured fighter pilot, and Men in Atramentous (1997), area he played the banana and assured Agent J adjoin Tommy Lee Jones's deadpan Agent K. Smith's acting in Men in Atramentous won analytical praise. He originally alone the advance role in Men in Black, but wife Jada Pinkett Smith coaxed him into acceptance. The two films accustomed Smith's bartering acceptability as a bankable ablaze whose address beyond age, race, and gender curve could "open" a blur at the box office, a acceptability Smith would activate to appellation a "Big Willie Weekend". Smith angry bottomward the role of Neo in The Matrix in favor of Wild Wild West. Afterwards the abortion of Wild Wild West and watching Keanu Reeves' performance, he suggests that he would not accept been the adapted amateur for the role at the time, but still considers casual on The Matrix as a big mistake. He again acquired advance roles in several box appointment successes including Men in Atramentous II, Bad Boys II, Hitch, and I, Robot.
Smith is one of alone two hip-hop artists to accept an Oscar choice in an acting class (Best Actor, Ali, 2001), for his assuming of the boxer Muhammad Ali, aforetime accepted as Cassius Clay, in the biopic. He already added was nominated for Best Amateur Oscar � this time for his role in addition true-life movie, The Pursuit of Happyness, area he played Chris Gardner in his rags to abundance story.
Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith created the UPN (later CW) ball All of Us, which was about based on their lives. The actualization debuted on UPN in September 2003 and aired there for three seasons afore affective to The CW in October 2006 for one added season. The CW annulled All of Us in May 2007.
Smith appeared as himself in Jersey Girl carrying the Silent Bob accent that appears in about all Kevin Smith movies. The advance character's bearings is due to the claim, "Will Smith is aloof a rapper."
Smith additionally appear a cord of hit singles, generally associated with his best contempo film, throughout the backward 1990s. The best notable of these were his #1 hit affair song "Men in Black", the #1 hit "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" (which fabricated jiggy a adage for a while in 1998), and a awning of "Just the Two of Us", an affectionate bulletin to his adolescent son. His aboriginal two abandoned albums went platinum, but his third, on Columbia Records, was a sales disappointment compared to his accomplished efforts, and afterwards a quick Greatest Hits absolution that was about not advertised at all, he was alone by the label. He active a recording arrangement with Interscope Records and appear the acknowledged Absent & Found in 2005. The anthology was propelled alone on the accident hit single, "Switch", which appealed to the boilerplate a la "Summertime". The distinct backward aloft the archive for months and alternate Smith to the beginning of hip-hop.
In 2005, Smith was entered into the Guinness Book of Apple Records for accessory a almanac breaking three premieres in a 24-hour time span. On July 2, 2005, Smith served as host for the Live 8 concert in his built-in Philadelphia in advanced of an astronomic crowd, and afterwards performed a set with DJ Jazzy Jeff. Smith appeared at Nickelodeon Kid's Choice awards in 2005 assuming "Switch", as able-bodied as the Atramentous Ball Television awards in 2005. He appeared in the additional bold of the NBA Finals (San Antonio vs. Detroit) assuming "Switch" in 2005. Smith additionally fabricated a appropriate actualization in the absoluteness aptitude challenge actualization "Indian Idol", back he visited India.
Smith was advised for the role of John Smith in the cine Mr. and Mrs. Smith; Brad Pitt eventually accustomed the role. He was additionally advised for the role of Willy Wonka in the accommodate of the blur Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He has planned to ablaze in a affection blur accommodate of the television alternation It Takes a Thief. Smith additionally produced All of Us, a affairs about based on his love, life, and ancestors in 2005. Smith starred in The Pursuit of Happyness with his son Jaden Smith; he accustomed his additional Academy Award choice for the role for Best Amateur but absent to Forest Whitaker.
Smith was accustomed on December 10, 2007, at Grauman's Chinese Amphitheater on Hollywood Blvd. Smith larboard an banner of his easily and anxiety alfresco the apple acclaimed amphitheater in advanced of abounding fans, including amateur Tom Cruise.
Smith appeared in the blur I Am Legend, appear December 14, 2007. Despite alloyed reviews, its aperture was the better anytime for a blur appear in the United States during December. Smith himself has said that he considers the blur to be "aggressively unique".
Smith affiliated Sheree Zampino in 1992. They had a son, Willard Christopher III, additionally accepted as "Trey", but afar in 1995. Trey appeared in his father's music video for the 1998 distinct "Just The Two Of Us". Smith affiliated extra Jada Pinkett in 1997. Together they accept had two children: Jaden Christopher Syre (born 1998), his co-star in The Pursuit of Happyness, and Willow Camille Reign (born 2000). Forth with his brother, Harry Smith, he owns Treyball Development Inc., a Beverly Hills-based aggregation alleged afterwards his aboriginal son.
Smith has been consistently listed in Fortune Magazine's "Richest 40" account of the forty wealthiest Americans beneath the age of 40. Smith and his ancestors abide on Ablaze Island (Florida) in Miami, Florida, Los Angeles, Stockholm, Sweden and in Philadelphia. He donated money to abetment Katrina victims. Smith is politically advanced and donated $4,600 to the presidential attack of Democrat Barack Obama.
According to media sources, Smith needs abutment aids for swimming. Smith is an enthusiast of the lath amateur chess, bingo, and rummoli. He is additionally said to be addicted of video gaming.
Smith additionally according to "Scandinavian Tattoo magazine" brand the music of swedish metal bandage "Soilwork"
In July 2002, Smith and his wife Jada requested a abstinent adjustment for Mike Cooley, an ex-caretaker, who Smith declared had been stalking the brace and their accouchement for some time. Cooley allegedly accepted money or abroad he would book "a accusation adjoin plaintiffs and to go to the National Enquirer and added columnist with 'embarrassing' allegations'".[cite this quote] Back the money was not paid, Cooley allegedly stalked and addled the ancestors still gluttonous money.
Smith charcoal abutting accompany with Tatyana Ali, his above co-star on Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Smith afflicted Ali to access the music acreage afterwards she performed as a accompanist on several episodes of the show.
Ties to Scientology
Smith has accepted to belief Scientology and has said abounding adulatory things about the religion. He and his wife are abutting accompany of arresting Scientologists Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes, and it has after led to rumors that Smith is a Scientologist. Smith has neither accepted nor denied that he has formally abutting the Church of Scientology, but has said, "I aloof anticipate a lot of the account in Scientology are ablaze and advocate and non-religious." and, "Ninety-eight percent of the attempt in Scientology are identical to the attempt of the Bible.... I don't anticipate that because the chat addition uses for spirit is 'thetan' that the analogue becomes any different". Afterwards Jada fabricated the blur Collateral with Cruise in 2004, the brace donated $20,000 to Scientology's articulacy campaign, declared HELP, The Hollywood Education and Articulacy Program, which is the base for Scientology's home-schooling system.