With the launch of his memoir titled ‘Will’, actor-producer Will Smith has laid bare several moments from his life that have left a mark on him.
The memoir in the form of an audiobook, talks about his (complicated) relationships with his parents, his wife Jada Pinket Smith and his former-wife, Sheree Zampino.
Talking about his relationship with his father Willard Carroll Smith, Sr., also known as Daddy O, Will says: “I was afraid of my father. When I was nine years old, I watched my father punch my mother in the side of her head so hard that she collapsed. I saw her spit blood.”
“That moment, in that bedroom, probably more than any other moment in my life, has defined who I am today.”
The actor mentions that despite the anger issues, his father taught him some important life lessons.
He says: “My father tormented me, but he was also the greatest man that I have ever known. My father was violent, but he was also at every game, play and recital. He was an alcoholic, but he was sober at every premier of every one of my movies.”
The actor also talks about mother Caroline Bright and her teachings that shaped him.
“Knowledge would be the only thing that the world couldn’t take away from you and she only cared about three things: Education. Education and Education. She (Caroline Bright) loved business. Banking, Finance, Sales & Contracts. By 25, as a struggling single mom, she was probably one of the most educated African-American women in Pittsburgh.”
On his former-wife, Sheree Zampino, Will shared: “Sheree said that I wasn’t in love with her, I was in love with the idea of her. What I believe a wife should be like.
“Anybody could be her, she once said. Sheree used to call herself my placeholder wife. The woman who was supposed to check the box of ‘Wife’ in Will Smith’s life.”
Recalling his divorce, the actor mentions: “It s**ks getting divorce papers.
“It is a publicly filed declaration that you are an unlovable piece of shit. The funny part is that I got my papers on February 14th (Valentine’s Day). The lowest point in my life was my parents’ separation, but this (divorce with Sheree) was like I was repeating the cycle. I was in denial. I would have never gotten married if I thought divorce was an option.”
He goes on to mention his wife Jada Pinkett-Smith and the kind of relationship that they share.
“We drank every day and had sex multiple times every day for four straight months. I started to wonder if this was a competition.”
Will reveals in his audiobook that his relationship with Jada Pinkett transformed him completely.
They fit together so naturally, and their energies combined exponentially in a way that they were like old friends rather than new lovers.
Since his divorce from Sheree wasn’t then finalised, Jada and Will decided not to go public with their relationship. They travelled to exotic, secret getaways, discovered private air travel and checked in under aliases.
‘Will’, the memoir of one of the most influential actors, Will Smith is available on Audible.