Will Smith is shedding some light on the “pain” in his life.
The King Richard actor, 53, was one of multiple stars interviewed by David Letterman for Season 4 of the Netflix series My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, which was released on May 20. His episode began, however, with a black title card that informed audiences that “this episode was filmed prior to the 2022 Academy Awards ceremony.”
Back in March, Will made headlines for slapping Chris Rock onstage at the event after the comedian made a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
During their hour-long conversation, Will dug deep into the “trauma” that he experienced throughout his childhood and career, which he detailed in his 2021 memoir Will. Noting the opening line of his novel, the actor explained that he’s “always thought of myself as a coward” after he witnessed his father “beat up” his mother as a child and did not intervene.
The effect caused Will to project a cheery, positive image throughout his career. “When I showed up, I wanted people to feel good and be happy,” he explained. “Because I found that when my household was that way, I felt safe.”