Now this is a story all about how Will Smith‘s most famous TV deal went down. The A-list actor used Storytime, a recurring series he has shared on his YouTube channel, to reveal how the iconic 90s sitcom The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air came to be.
As Smith tells it, he was “broke” after his 1989 studio album And In This Corner… landed with a thud. After his financial woes landed him in hot water with the IRS, he decided to take a trip to The Arsenio Hall Show. There, a drunk Quincy Jones convinced Smith to commit to the project that would ultimately jumpstart his career as an actor.
The story itself, which has received more than two million views just five days after it was first uploaded, is fascinating, but I’m equally intrigued by Smith’s continuing passion for YouTube and his desire to use his channel to share exciting content with his fans. Since launching his channel at the start of 2018, Smith has gone, in his own words, “YouTube stupid,” attracting close to two million subscribers. Along the way, he’s also taking cues from the community around him. The Fresh Prince video, in both its visual style and its tone, is reminiscent of the “Draw My Life” format, which has long been a YouTube staple.
Smith’s interest in YouTube doesn’t seem as if it will slow down anytime soon. The video site recently announced a partnership with the actor for a program called The Jump Off, in which Smith will bungie jump out of a helicopter above the Grand Canyon. That stunt is expected to be streamed live on Smith’s birthday, September 25.