Will Smith has revealed he always wanted to focus on ‘Black excellence’ and never make films about slavery.
The 53-year-old actor, whose first big screen appearance came in 1992 crime noir thriller Where the Day Takes You after he became a household name on classic sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, admitted he almost changed his stance when he was linked to Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained but he wasn’t sold on the idea of ‘vengeance’.
Speaking in the November issue of British GQ, he said: ‘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. 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 also urged Black Americans to change ‘marketing’ and focus on the ‘simplicity’ of the Black Lives Matter movement.
He explained: ‘So “Abolish the police. Defund the police.” I would love if we would just say “Defund the bad police.” It’s almost like I want, as Black Americans, for us to change our marketing for the new position we’re in.
‘So “critical race theory”, just call it “truth theory”. This is a difficult area to discuss, but I feel like the simplicity of Black Lives Matter was perfect.
‘Anybody who tries to debate Black Lives Matter looks ridiculous… From a standpoint of getting it done, “Black Lives Matter” gets it done. “Defund the police” doesn’t get it done, no matter how good the ideas are.’
While social media can be a toxic environment, Will hailed it as a perfect tool for him being able to keep his finger on the pulse, and he’s got some big plans for his ‘next phase’.
He added: ‘It’s such a powerful way for me to keep in touch with people and, creatively, what the next thing is about to be. The next phase of my life is going to be the most creative and expansive of my entire life and career.’
The Hollywood star is set to drop his autobiography WILL in November, and he admitted he was only able to write so candidly after his father died in 2016.
‘I felt like a combination of having completed some phase of my life and also with my father dying. I just never would’ve been able to say this stuff about my father beating up my mother,’ he explained. ‘I never would’ve been able to talk about that while he was alive.’
See the full feature in the November issue of British GQ available via digital download and on newsstands Friday 1st October.
Credit: Original article published here.