“James Avery wouldn’t give me a damn inch”: Will Smith Reminisces How the Heartbreaking Scene From ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ Came to Life.

“James Avery wouldn’t give me a damn inch”: Will Smith Reminisces How the Heartbreaking Scene From ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ Came to Life.

To sit on my throne as the prince of Bel-Air.” Will Smith might be The Fresh Prince, but there is no truer king for the show than James Avery. The late veteran actor embodied the strict yet lovable uncle Phil on the NBC show and is one of TV’s most loved father figures of all time. From constantly being at loggerheads to sharing pure and heartening moments, Smith and Avery had impeccable chemistry on screen.

Despite being known for its whacky humor, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air could move you to tears in a heartbeat. And many of those beautifully written yet heartbreaking scenes had Will Smith and James Avery in the forefront. One such sequence is the iconic “How come he don’t want me, man?” Let us see the Men in Black actor break down the emotional scene. 

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Will Smith owes the iconic scene to James Avery

Back in 2018, in a conversation with Rap Radar, Will Smith took a walk down memory lane to the sets of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The classic 90s sitcom was the Academy Award Winner’s first foray into acting. The host particularly asks Will about a rather emotional scene that “has taken on a life of its own on the internet.” It is from season 4 episode 24 of the comedy show titled Papa’s got a Brand New Excuse. The scene in question is at the end of the video below.

Recalling the filming of that episode, Smith said, “Behind the scenes of that James Avery was relentlessly on me to elevate.” The scene has a heartbroken Will Smith frustrated with his on-screen father for abandoning him yet again. With the scene already so difficult, Smith revealed, “James Avery wouldn’t give me a damn inch.” An already established actor at the time known for his craft, Avery really pushed young Will.

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According to Smith, the veteran actor was “not accepting anything other than absolute committed perfection,” from him. Having filmed season 1 at 17, The King Richard actor was barely 21 when they shot that episode of the show. By his own admission, Will looked up to Avery and was always in awe of his craft.He was the model for me of an actor, ” shared Smith.

In the end, however, as we know, Will Smith was absolutely phenomenal in that tear-jerking scene. And why wouldn’t it be? It had the James Avery stamp of approval. What did you think of that scene? Let us know in the comments below. Also, wouldn’t it be great to re-watch The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air streaming on Netflix?

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