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The Will Smith Bio

The Will Smith Review –

by Nate Lee

Best Film:

The Pursuit of Happyness

(Oscar-nominated performance)

Great Performances You May Not Have Seen:
Six Degrees of Separation (the young con artist and supposed son of Sidney Poitier)
Ali (the Greatest, himself; an Oscar-nominated performance)
Enemy of the State (an attorney the NSA is after)
I am Legend (the last "man" on Earth)
Bad Boys I and II (a cop, opposite Martin Lawrence)
The Legend of Bagger Vance (a really, really good caddie)
Men In Black I & II
I, Robot
Enemy of the State
Bad Boys
Independence Day
Wild, Wild West (his one movie that you won't like)
The Real Will Smith:
The Pursuit of Happyness

Remember when Will asks the guy what it takes to be a stockbroker? Be good with math and be good with people? Well, that's Smith. It may not take either to be a star, goodness knows, but Will is the guy who turned down M.I.T. to rap. And clearly the charm that comes through in abundance on screen has its base somewhere in reality. Plus, like the real-life character he plays, Chris Gardner, Will is clearly ambitious, tremendously hard working, and, yes, was also near bankruptcy, and had to work his way out of an IRS debt early in his career. Also, to add one more touch of "real," his son plays his son.
Acting Style:
Friendly cool. Will doesn't want his youngest fans to forget that he was, is and maybe always will be a rap star. But, like his character in Fresh Prince, whatever the opposite of gangsta is, there is Will.

But unlike other rappers, with the exception of Eminem and maybe Ice Cube, he can really, really act. Okay, most of the stuff is action hero stuff, and who can't do that. But, Smith's first big role, in the film version of the brilliant play Six Degrees of Separation, was the real thing. Not to mention Ali and Pursuit of Happyness.

They don't hand out Oscar nominations to action stars, and Smith has two. Plus, his movement to more serious dramas suggests he will be balancing all the blockbusting with something more substantial in the future. Meanwhile, the "cool" is a lot of fun, and the serious (or even comedic), well, it's even more fun.
Bits and Quirks:
Cool poses. Cocked head and cocked eyebrow, as if to fake innocence. Bruce Willis-style action film one-liners, but done loosely. The hands a lot: in front of the mouth to disguise a smirk; pointing (left over, of course, from rapping); and the hands and arms stuck out in pretense of innocence.
Great Scenes:
The Pursuit Of Happyness

> The scenes with his real life son as his son, particularly in their darkest moments, on the subway and in line for a place to stay
> Conning his way into the stadium boxes
> The interview
> Getting the job

Men In Black

> Taking the test against the armed-forces elite
> Getting slimed while delivering an alien baby
> Giving people the speech after he erases their memories
> Watching Jones shoot off Tony Shalhoub's head and watching it grow back
> Having the revelation about the presence of aliens

Men In Black II

> Retrieving Tommy Lee Jones from the post office
> Getting flushed

Enemy Of The State

> Setting up the Mafia to shoot it out with the NSA
> Scrapping with Gene Hackman in his headquarters.


> Getting drunk on anti-allergy medicine
> Coaching an inept Kevin James on women, talking, dancing and how not to be yourself
> The date with Eva Mendes, particularly kicking her in the head.

Wild, Wild West

> At the beginning, the stakeout in the water tower.

Independence Day

> Finally catching up with the space ship that he shot down.