Contemporary Black History - Will_Smith
September 25, 1968– Present
Money and success don't change people; they merely amplify what is already there.~ Will Smith
Famed actor and musician Will Smith was born Willard Christopher Smith, Jr. in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to mother Caroline, a school board employee, and father Willard C. Smith, a refrigeration company owner. At the young age of twelve Will Smith began rapping, and over the course of his life he has worked as an actor, producer, rapper, and songwriter.
Smith has enjoyed success in television, film, and music. In the late 1980s, Smith achieved modest fame as a rapper under the name The Fresh Prince. In 1990, his popularity increased dramatically when he starred in the popular television series The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The show ran for six seasons (1990–96) and has been syndicated consistently since the series ended. Moving from television to film, Smith starred in numerous blockbuster movies. His first major role was in Six Degrees of Separation (1993). This was quickly followed by roles in Bad Boys (1995), Independence Day (1996), Men in Black (1997) and Enemy of the State (1998).
Smith is the only actor to have eight consecutive films gross over $100 million in the domestic box office, eleven consecutive films gross over $150 million internationally, and eight consecutive films in which he starred open at the number one spot in the domestic box office tally. He has received Best Actor Oscar nominations for Ali (2001) and The Pursuit of Happyness (2006), in which his real-life son Jaden co-starred.
Producing as well as acting, Smith continues to make films. Among his most recent are starring as Dr. Bennet Omalu in the sports drama Concussion (2015), earning a Golden Globe nomination for his role as a doctor fighting to raise awareness about head trauma in NFL players. The DC Comics movie Suicide Squad is set for a 2016 release.
Will Smith is married to actress Jada Koren Pinkett. Together they have two children, son Jaden and daughter Willow. Will Smith has an older son Trey from his first marriage. Will Smith lives with his family in Los Angeles, California.