(LOS ANGELES) — Will Smith and his son Jaden co-star in the upcoming sci-fi drama After Earth, their second on-screen pairing after 2006’s Pursuit of Happyness.
Fourteen-year-old Jaden and his younger sister Willow are following in their parents’ footsteps with careers in music and movies, and the father-son duo spoke to New York magazine about their relationship on and off the big screen. Jaden and Willow’s mom is actress Jada Pinkett Smith.
When asked if Jaden could have been a dentist instead of an actor, Will Smith replies, “It may seem like we have pushed our kids into the business, but that is absolutely insane. I would never, ever, push somebody to have their face on a poster that’s going be everywhere in the world. He is making a choice from the informed.”
The elder Smith adds, “It’s less scary to me than if he wanted to be a dentist in that I couldn’t help with what he’d chosen. I have relationships with some of the biggest filmmakers and actors and producers on Earth. So I can be a huge help.”
Will notes that his daughter Willow chose to sing and then she changed her mind and he respected her decision. He explained, “At the peak of ‘Whip My Hair,’ she’s like, ‘Daddy, I’m done.’ I was like, ‘Wow, wow, wow. No, baby, I got Annie — the upcoming movie remake, you know. It’ll be New York, you’ll be with Beyoncé. You can bring your friends.’ And she said, ‘Daddy, I got a better idea. How about I just be 12?’ At the end of the day, it has to be their choice.”
Will was also asked about his family’s similarities to the Kardashian family, who have essentially treated their fame as the family business. He responded, “We are trying to put great things into the world, we’re trying to have fun, and we’re trying to become the greatest versions of ourselves in the process of doing things we love. So the idea of fame or exploitation or orchestrating the media is sometimes even less than desirable for us.”
After Earth opens nationwide May 31.
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