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"Pursuit of Happyness"


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here's one where he talks a little more about it:

Will Smith loves idea of playing Obama

October 27, 2006

BY BILL ZWECKER Sun-Times Columnist

Are you ready for "Barack Obama: The Movie"? Well, superstar Will Smith made it clear Thursday night that he's more than ready -- and he loves the idea of playing the title role.

Arriving for a special Chicago premiere screening of his upcoming film, "The Pursuit of Happyness," Smith admitted the concept of portraying Illinois' junior senator was appealing, "but of course he has to write the third act in a couple of years."

Clearly meaning that "third act" would be a run for the White House, Smith added, "There's absolutely going to be a third act and I believe [Obama] is going to be the hero."

Not a bad endorsement from a guy who has made quite a career of playing heroes of all kinds the past few years.

Besides the premiere at the AMC River East Theatres, Smith was in town Thursday to tape "Oprah," joined by Chicagoan Chris Gardner, the man he portrays in "The Pursuit of Happyness."

The film (officially opening Dec. 15) is based on Gardner's amazing journey -- from being a homeless, virtually penniless, single father in San Francisco to a multi-millionaire owner of his own investment firm, headquartered in the Loop.

Changed his mind

When Gardner first learned Smith was interested in playing him in the film based on his memoirs, the executive admitted he had some reservations.

"Honestly, the first thing that went through my mind was, 'I love Will -- I always have. I love his music, his movies, his TV shows,' but I thought Will had never done anything like this.

"It was my daughter who broke it down for me. She said, 'Pop, if he can play Muhammad Ali, he can play you!'

"And you know what? Will Smith played Chris Gardner better than Chris Gardner!"

In the film, Smith's own son Jaden plays Gardner's son, an experience the actor said "has totally given me a new perspective on our relationship as father and son. . . . In the film, there are scenes Jaden looks at me and says things I know were not just acting; I truly believe he meant the things he said as he read those lines. That was magical for me."

The younger Gardner, Christopher -- now in his mid-20s and pursuing a career on the business side of the music industry in California -- also was on hand for the Chicago premiere Thursday.

Son's shining performance

On the red carpet, Smith also said he was delighted that Oprah Winfrey told her audience of her support for the film -- and made a comment at the taping about Jaden's acting that "shocked me as I was sitting there. She said it was the best performance by a young actor that she had seen since Tatum O'Neal in 'Paper Moon,' " said Smith.

"I went, 'Whoa! . . . That's my son, and I made the movie so I didn't look at it along those lines. Then I was watching the clips [at "Oprah"] and realized he really is amazing. As much as I'd like to take some credit for it, I can't. He's a natural; something he was blessed with that's beyond me."

Asked why he had agreed to make "The Pursuit of Happyness," Smith said, "I loved the story and what it says about family, perseverance, drive and the will to succeed -- especially against seemingly overwhelming odds. There are not many men like Chris Gardner in the world, and it was a role I just knew I had to play."

New kind of movie for him

Despite the cold, constant showers Thursday night, nearly 200 fans crowded into the AMC Theater complex on East Illinois to greet Smith.

The actor didn't disappoint them, making an effort to shake hands, pose for photos, sign autographs and even gave a big hug to one delighted woman who presented him with a large bouquet of flowers.

As for the kinds of movies that have made him famous, Smith quipped, "Well, I can't quite jump over robots and aliens as easily as I once could -- though I still think I can do that for a little while longer. But it was nice to make this movie that took me in a totally new direction.

"I hope it will make a nice film for families to see together over the holidays."


he's also supposed to be on extra today (probably a short interview)


Edited by MissAshley
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there's a third trailer guys! the Japanese version, it's in Japanese and English though, but it shows different scenes:


or you can view it here, their poster is a tiny bit different as well


Edited by MissAshley
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My message to the movie: I am really can't wait for the movie to premiere!! I got inspired to it and not just because Will Smith is in it, also the plot. It seems like a sad story and with a happy ending and I got interested. I'm gonna try to read the book first and then watch the movie.

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