Will Smith has had a respectable career in the industry starting from the 90s with many memorable films and roles. With many successful and high-profile films such as the Bad Boys franchise, Men in Black franchise, Independence Day, Ali, Enemy of the State, The Pursuit of Happiness, Concussion, and most recently King Richard. He has established himself as a leading actor in Hollywood. However, the unfortunate incident at the 2022 Oscars affected his reputation and integrity in the industry.
The Chris Rock slap at the Oscars greatly derailed Smith’s industry reputation. His status as a loving and capable actor was immediately replaced by disdain and hate from the general public. Since then, he has apologized for his actions and has been trying to earn back the respect and attention of the audience through his work.
Will Smith Pushed Himself For Emancipation To Win Back His Audience
After the infamous Oscars slap, Will Smith had one film released in 2022, which was Emancipation directed by Antoine Fuqua. The story told the horrifying ordeal of the slaves in a Louisiana plantation in 1863 and how Smith’s character attempts to escape to the North. Smith worked really hard to authentically show the atrocities and terrors that the slaves faced during the time. He told Deadline,
“It was really interesting with the decision of what to show and how to show it. And there was a lot of energy that went into it. We were speaking to Mary Elliot, the director of the [Smithsonian’s National] African American Museum of History and Culture, and she was talking about how she had that same difficulty in putting together these slavery exhibits because you want to capture the reality, but you don’t want the reality to be so unbearable that people wouldn’t wanna come see the exhibit.
So it’s like you’re trying to find that delicate balance where you reach people and you capture the essence of the depth of the atrocity without defeating your purpose by creating something that people don’t wanna to see.”
While audiences did not forget his actions at the Oscars, his performance in the film garnered significant praise from the critics and audiences. The emotional turmoil and the feeling of alienation and despair that the slaves faced was convincingly portrayed by Smith in the film.
Will Smith Expressed His Excitement for the Upcoming Fourth Bad Boys Film
Will Smith recently made a virtual appearance at the 2023 CinemaCon event and promoted his upcoming fourth Bad Boys film alongside Martin Lawrence. He told the audience he and Lawrence are hard at work on the film and expressed his excitement for the project. He said, (via Variety)
“We’re hype, we’re excited. We glad we not there because we here and they’re paying us to be here.”‘
Apart from Smith and Lawrence, the film will also star Vanessa Hudgens, Alexander Ludwig, and Paola Núñez with new additions like Eric Dane, Ioan Gruffudd, and Rhea Seehorn joining the franchise. The film is scheduled to release in theaters on June 14, 2024.