1. He didn’t originally want to take the role of Agent J in Men in Black because he didn’t like the script.
His wife Jada Pinkett-Smith had to convince him to take the role.
2. Smith’s line “And what the hell is that smell?” was unscripted and was a genuine reaction.
The scene in Independence Day where he’s dragging an unconscious alien was filmed on the salt flats near the Great Salt Lake in Utah. The Great Salt Lake is home to tiny crustaceans called brine shrimp. When they die, their bodies sink to the bottom of the lake (which isn’t very deep) and decompose and when the wind kicks up, it causes a very, very bad smell. It seems no one thought to warn Will of this.
3. There is a small connection between Men In Black and I Am Legend.
When James jumps from the overpass onto the tour bus in Men In Black, he’s jumping from the Pershing Square Bridge. Which is the same location that Robert Neville (Smith in I Am Legend) is attacked by demon dogs.
4. To research his role of J, Will Smith attended an alien encounter convention in Las Vegas.
5. Will Smith turned down the lead in The Matrix in order to film Wild Wild West.
He has said it’s the worst decision he’s ever made in his career.
6. He didn’t accept The Matrix because he didn’t understand the plot.
He told Wired in 2004 “In the pitch, I just didn’t see it … I would have absolutely messed up The Matrix. At that point I wasn’t smart enough as an actor to let the movie be. Whereas Keanu was smart enough to just let it be. Let the movie and the director tell the story, and don’t try and perform every moment.”
7. Hancock’s uniform has a shout out to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Will Smith, a Philadelphia native, wore a costume in Hancock with the 1948-1995 Philadelphia Eagles replica logo on the back.
8. Margot Robbie and her mother taught Will Smith how to swim.
On the set of their 2015 film Focus.
9. Will personally hired M. Night Shyamalan to direct After Earth.
He had wanted to work with Shyamalan for years. He also considers this his worst film.
10. The Pursuit of Happyness is the first film Will Smith worked with his son Jaden, but it’s not the first time he’s worked with one of his kids.
Will Smith loves to work with his kids, his older son Trey appeared in music video for “Just The Two Of Us” in 1997.
11. Will Smith chose Kevin James for the role of Albert in Hitch.
He loved James’ work on King of Queens so much, he wanted him to be a part of the film.
12. While filming I, Robot, Will crashed his motorcycle going 60 MPH.
Since there were no re-shoots on this film, you can see him starting to lose control during the film.
13. Tom Hanks and Will Smith once auditioned for the same role.
They both were up for the part of Ben in Seven Pounds, but obviously it went to Will.
14. Not only did he have to gain 35 pounds to film Ali, Will was actually beaten up.
Charles Sufford, a real-life 235 pound heavyweight boxer (17-2 record), was cast as George Foreman, and was told to make his punches as real as possible, without actually making it impossible for Will to act.
15. “No I was picking something up for myself, I do a little cross dressing on the weekends. You know, you’d be surprised how a nice pair of edible panties can make a guy feel sexy.” This is another improvised line.
During Enemy of the State, Will said it was very hard to hold back on comedic side while filming a dramatic scene.
16. The “I Love You” at the end of Bad Boys has a big amount of significance.
Director Michael Bay fought with Will Smith because his character was supposed to say “I love you” to Marcus (Martin Lawrence). He said he would, but the day they filmed the final scene, he refused and fought with Bay for hours. It wasn’t until Bay said he didn’t care and they only had 15 minutes left to film that Smith wound up relenting and saying it.
17. His character Paul in Six Degress of Separation convinced people he was Sidney Poitier’s son.
In real life, when Smith met Poitier for the first time, the veteran actor said “Well, you’re almost handsome enough to be my son”.
18. In Men in Black II, “Actually it came with a black dude, but he kept getting pulled over” was once again all Smith’s doing.
The producers loved it so much, it made it’s way into the theatrical trailer.
Which Will Smith fact do you think is the most interesting? Chat with us on Twitter!