Will Smith Projects Slow Down

Interest in making a biopic of the actor has faded since the Oscars
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2022 3:59 PM CDT
Hollywood Slows Will Smith Projects
Will Smith arrives at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.   (AP Photo/John Locher)

The long-term fallout from Will Smith's slap of Chris Rock at the Academy Awards isn't known yet, but immediate effects are surfacing. Producers have slowed, if not stopped, a couple of his next jobs, per the Hollywood Reporter. One film, Fast and Loose, lost its director before the Oscars, and producers were urgently looking for a new one to replace David Leitch. Now Netflix has decided there's no rush. Bad Boys 4 was in preproduction; Smith received 40 pages of script before Oscars night. It's being held up, too. Emancipation was scheduled for its streaming release this year, but Apple hasn't set a date or commented on the issue.

Work could well be suspended on other Smith films in preproduction, per the New York Daily News. Studios had been competing to make a biopic based on his bestselling autobiography, Will. That's over, per the Daily Beast, after Apple and Netflix withdrew their bids. On Monday's episode of ABC's The View, Ana Navarro said losing work isn't a price Smith should pay for his actions. "He's had over 30 years of a career, where he's had a very positive image, been a positive role model, he's been very philanthropic, he's done all sorts of things," she said, per Yahoo Entertainment. "None of us should be judged by our worst moment." Smith is scheduled to meet with Academy officials on April 18. (Read more Will Smith stories.)

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