Will Smith Says An ‘Emancipation’ Co-Star Spat On Him While Filming: ‘I Was Like Whoa’
Will Smith revealed he was surprised after getting “spit on” by a co-star while filming his latest movie, “Emancipation.”
During a conversation on Facebook Watch’s “Red Table Talk” this week with his three kids Willow, 22, Jaden, 24, and Trey Smith, 30, the star recalled the uncomfortable “ad-libbed” moment while filming with one of the co-stars that left him speechless.
“As the years have gone on, I’ve gotten more and more locked into these characters for longer periods of time,” the 54-year-old explained, discussing the intensity of his role in the period film. “And it’s just the weight of this story, the weight of these experiences — the quality of these actors. It was emotionally, it was physically, it was spiritually taxing.”
Sharing that the actors got so into character that, at one point, an unnamed co-star spits in his face while filming, Smith detailed the jarring moment that happened early on while filming.
“One of the first days on set, there is a scene with one of the actors, and he leans down in my face and says, ‘You a cold one, ain’t you?’ and then he ad-libbed...”
After reenacting the off-script spitting, the Oscar-winner shared his exaggerated reaction at the red table, with his kids erupting into laughter.
Smith added with a chuckle, “I was like, ‘Makeup!’ No, but it was like ... I was like, ‘whoa,’ every actor on this set was taking it really, really seriously.”
Directed by filmmaker Antoine Fuqua, Smith stars as Peter, an enslaved man who “risks his life to escape and return to his family” and “embarks on a perilous journey of love and endurance,” the film’s synopsis reads.
“Emancipation” marks Smith’s first film since he slapped Chris Rock across the face at the 2022 Oscars after the comedian made a joke onstage about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
Last month, the father-of-three opened up about understanding if filmgoers have second thoughts about watching “Emancipation” considering his behavior at the Oscars.
“I completely understand that if someone is not ready, I would absolutely respect that and allow them their space to not be ready,” Smith told film critic Kevin McCarthy in an interview clip posted on social media.
He added that he hoped the reaction to the slap didn’t affect the film’s chances of success or the award opportunities for the other people who worked on the film.
“My deepest concern is my team — [director Antoine Fuqua] has done what I think is the greatest work of his entire career,” Smith said.
Based on a true story, “Emancipation” is now streaming on Apple TV+.
Watch Smith takeover the “Red Table Talk” with his kids below.