Well-known actor, producer, and rapper, Will Smith, has starred in several blockbuster movies such as Independence Day (1996), Men in Black (1997), and The Pursuit of Happyness (2006). Smith has always been vocal about his desire to take on challenging roles that truly showcase his acting skills.
In recent years, he has also been actively promoting the idea of “Black Excellence.” He aims to empower the black community and promote their achievements in various fields. He once explained that he wants to depict Black excellence in his movies and also wants roles like Tom Cruise. He also got a role in Django Unchained (2012) but he didn’t want to make a slavery film about vengeance.
Will Smith avoided making films about slavery
In 2021, actor Will Smith appeared for an interview with GQ and talked about his remarkable career. The actor explained that he avoided making films about slavery when he started acting,
“I’ve always avoided making films about slavery. In the early part of my career… I didn’t want to show Black people in that light. I wanted to be a superhero.”
Smith has established himself as one of the most talented and versatile actors in Hollywood. His performances have been praised by audiences and critics alike.
The actor wanted roles that were given to Tom Cruise
Further in the interview, Smith explained that he wanted to depict Black excellence and wanted roles that were given to Tom Cruise. He said,
“So I wanted to depict Black excellence alongside my white counterparts. I wanted to play roles that you would give to Tom Cruise. And the first time I considered it was Django. But I didn’t want to make a slavery film about vengeance.”
Will Smith turned down Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained (2012) mainly because he didn’t want to make a vengeance story.
Will Smith starred in Emancipation (2022)
Last year Apple TV+’s Emancipation was released. The movie saw Will Smith playing the role of a runaway slave, Peter. The film is based on a true story and set in the 1860s, during the Civil War era. Peter escapes from a Louisiana plantation after enduring brutal torture from his owner. Peter’s journey to freedom is difficult, as he must navigate through the dangerous swamps and evade the pursuing slave hunters. Along the way, he encounters Union soldiers and eventually joins the Union Army.
The film explores the themes of freedom, perseverance, and the ability to overcome adversity. The actor explained that this story was about “love and the power of Black love” and that is why he agreed to star in it.