Will Smith chan­nels grief for his lat­est role

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - LIFE - By AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS in New York

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.

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