Will Smith, the actor, began his career as Fresh Prince the rapper. The life before the actor’s A-list projects is not known to many today. He is widely popular for his roles in movies like I Am Legend and Pursuit of Happiness, but these serious roles evolved with Will’s age and wisdom. A young Will was way lighter and different, which is apparent not only from his previous roles but also from old interview tapes.
So before appearing in a suit and tie as Agent J in Men in Black, he was a crowned prince of tracksuits. The entertainer was into the rap scene of the ’90s. As evident from his role as Will in the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, his first major TV gig. The name Will is a short form for William in the series, while in reality, it is short for Willard. But how did the edgy tag Fresh Prince come up? In his own words, a young Will once revealed the backstory.
Will Smith as Fresh Prince: How it all began
Will Smith’s personality may have become more serious through time. But he was once known for being a happy chap, which rightfully earned him the name Fresh Prince. Back in his teen years, the wannabe rapper earned the name Prince as a result of his charming personality. According to reports, the loving name was given to compliment his skills to get out of any sticky situations with his silver tongue during high school.
During an interview with ET in 1988, Smith said that the word ‘Fresh’ was trending through Deejays around 1986. This led the rapper to rename his stage name, Fresh Prince. Smith released his first single, Girls Ain’t Nothing but Trouble, along with Deejay Jeffery Townes.
So when the Fresh Prince series came up, he was encouraged to use his rap name. It was done with the hopes that it will stick for the actor’s lifelong career. That did not happen, but the credit for the first half of his career widely goes to his character in the hit sitcom. Now that Smith is troubled by the Slapgate incident, do you think reprising his name as a rapper could help gain back the love? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.