Will Smith channels grief for his latest role
Will Smith had already begun researching his role for Collateral Beauty when he learned that his father was terminally ill.
Smith said at the film’s world premiere in New York on Monday that he had to channel the emotions of that tragic news into a demanding film role. Smith’s father, Willard Carroll Smith Jr, died on Nov 7.
Smith stars in the film as a father who suffers a great tragedy and begins to question the point of existence.
“It’s a guy that experiences a loss and gets furious at the universe, and writes these letters to Love, Time and Death, and his mind is so twisted that he mails the letters. And then, Love, Time and Death respond. You know, it’s that beautiful Christmas twist to it, but dealing with real issues,” Smith says.
The film also stars Helen Mirren. She admits to loving the script, and feels it shared the same vibe as Christmas classics like It’s a Wonderful Life.
Edward Norton, who plays Smith’s best friend in the film, also says he saw a strong similarity with the film to holiday classics like It’s a Wonderful Life.