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Will Smith Gets Nick Cannon's Fists Flying


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CULVER CITY, California — Nick Cannon is one project closer to following in the footsteps of his idol Will Smith. The 25-year-old rapper/actor is slated to star in his own boxing flick, "The Hawk," just as his mentor pushed out an

Oscar-nominated turn as legendary heavyweight champ Muhammad Ali in the 2001 biopic "Ali."

Cannon actually penned the script for "The Hawk," a drama fueled by the relationship between a father and son. Inspiration for the story came after the actor visited Smith while he was filming "Ali" nearly five years ago.

"I actually got into boxing because Will was doing ['Ali'], and I was hanging with him on set," Cannon explained. "I got with the boxing trainer who trained him, and we came up with some stuff together. It's gonna be real hot."

While shooting isn't set to start until 2006, the actor has been hard at work for months, training twice a day to get his body in fighting shape for the moment he actually steps into the ring. "It's a real intense project," he said.

Cannon is currently working on two movies slated for release in 2006: the gritty independent film "Weapons" and the Emilio Estevez-helmed "Bobby." In the latter, Cannon joins an all-star ensemble including Anthony Hopkins, Demi Moore, Martin Sheen, Sharon Stone, William H. Macy, Lindsay Lohan, Ashton Kutcher and Elijah Wood.

In "Bobby," a film that plays out the assassination of Senator Robert F. Kennedy, Cannon said he was honored to get the chance to work with another of his idols, singer/actor/humanitarian Harry Belafonte. "I love [belafonte] and everything from the beginning of his career, like 'The Banana Boat Song (Day-O),' " Cannon said. "He's given me so much wisdom. My man is in his late 70s but he's still got it. I've learned so much [from him], so hopefully I can be like him one day."

"Bobby" and "Weapons" are just two of a slew of Cannon films due out next year. He already has the political thriller "The Beltway" in the can, playing an intern on Capitol Hill who unveils a dangerous plot headed up by the CIA. Cannon also stars as Forest Whitaker's brother in the indie gambling drama "Even Money" and lends his voice to the animated adventure "Monster House," due July 21.

As for music, Cannon is finally gearing up to release his second album, Stages, early next year. According to the singer, he'll release the Kanye West-produced "My Wife", but not before he puts out "Are You a Dime," tentatively set to drop as early as January.

"It's a big party club record and it's got an old-school sample in it," Cannon said of the track, which he also produced. "We're doing contests all over the country looking for the most beautiful, well-rounded woman we can find, so that's how we gonna do it real big in '06."

Just Thought I'd Post this since it has Will Smith in it, I didn't know he was Nick Cannons idol, i don't think hes very good on the mic, don't know about the big screen tho

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Nick Cannon should leave the rapping to Will and just do as many movies as he wants to, I honestly wouldn't care if he takes Will's #1 spot in the boxoffice, releasing singles once a year ain't gonna get Nick Cannon much recognition as an mc, nobody remembers his last album....

Edited by bigted
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Well releasing one single a year ain't gonna help improve his rapping skills, he'll never be able to hold a mic for Will, if you compare his first few years of rapping to JJFP's there's no comparison, Nick has no street credabilty yet, JJFP had a lot when they started... He's far superior as an actor at this point though with all the different roles he's done, actually more advanced than when Will started acting, this movie could make him a big time actor, like I said I wouldn't care if he exceeds Will in acting, lol.

Edited by bigted
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No I think I'm going the Jim route now, I want Will to do rapping full time, he's made enough money off of acting already that he could properly promote albums, do tours, and get all the recognition he deserves in the rap game, Will had some great roles but I think it's time to move on, his heart is in hip-hop and he needs to clean it up, he has the power to do it, he could run the buisiness like Jay-Z does by having a label, maybe when he gets older he could back to acting again, music gives him more of a forum for him to properly express his thoughts, there's plenty more that he hasn't said that he could say... There could never be another Will Smith period but the young mc that has a chance to be successful like Will is Kel Spencer and the young actor who has the best chance to be successful like Will is Kel Spencer.... I don't think it's good for somebody to just try to be like one person, they should do their own routines too, I don't know if playing the same roles as Will does is gonna get Nick Cannon that much respect either, you might see me talking about KRS a lot but I'm not KRS, I'm Big Ted, there's things about me that're different from him....

Edited by bigted
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Like I said he could go back to acting when he's older, there's plenty more for him to do with the rap game in the meantime, even if he dies in a few years god forbid but at least he'll be able to get out his thoughts he wanted to, I mean think if he died when he was filming a flick before he got a chance to record "Tell Me Why", that'd be devasting! You can't take things for granted in life, look at how 2Pac and Aaliyah were cut off at young ages, none of us know how long we're here... If he makes it to an older age he could go back to doing scripts, that's secondary in his life, a chick on the side he says, lol, time to prove it son... I would even rather see Will be like James Brown and tear up the stage still when he's 70 years old though when it comes down to it, lol, instead of being like Morgan Freeman at 70 years old.... Nick Cannon is more of an actor/rapper, you won't be seeing people like Chuck D and Kool Moe Dee giving him props for his mc skills anytime soon that's for sure like they do for Will...

Edited by bigted
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I think its coolthat Nick Cannon wants 2 follow in Will's footsteps. I like the way that Nick admires Will so much and he has repsect for Will 2. He is taking on different roles and doing music at the same time cos he was inspired by his idol.

But the only thing tho is if he becomes a big time hollywood actor hope he don't get air-headed like Bow Wow and start saying things like I'm a better actor than Will is and I'm a better rapper 2.

Edited by Angel Amor
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