NEWS

Will Smith Reveals the Film He Regrets Making: 'I Wanted to Be the Biggest Movie Star'

by John Boone 10:25 AM PDT, June 22, 2016
Playing Will Smith Reveals the Film He Regrets Making: 'I Wanted to Be the Biggest Movie Star'

As far as career regrets go, Will Smith seems happy to reveal his: Wild Wild West.

The 47-year-old actor singled out the 1999 Western as a low point in his career during a talk at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity on Tuesday and blamed it on wanting to be "the biggest movie star."

"I had so much success that I started to taste global blood," he said. "My focus shifted from my artistry to winning. I wanted to win and be the biggest movie star. What happened was there was a lag. Around Wild Wild West time, I found myself promoting something because I wanted to win versus promoting something because I believed in it."

EXCLUSIVE: Muhammad Ali's Daughter Laila Says Will Smith's Portrayal of Her Father Was 'Phenomenal'

Smith went on to claim that you can no long hide a "s**t" movie in "smoke and mirrors."

"I have to be in tune with [fans'] needs and not trick them into going to see Wild Wild West," he said of moviegoing in the social media era. "Back in the '80s and '90s, [if] you had a piece of crap movie, you put a trailer with a lot of explosions and it was Wednesday before people knew your movie was s**t."

"Now, what happens is 10 minutes into the movie, people are tweeting 'This is s**t, go see Vin Diesel,'" he added.

The Academy Award nominee also revealed an important life lesson he learned from his daughter, Willow, when she shaved her head to get out of touring with Justin Bieber in 2010. Listen to him recall how his kids "decided they were no longer going to function under my tyranny" in this clip from the conference:

NEWS: 'Independence Day' Director Roland Emmerich Says Will Smith Not Signing Up for Sequel 'Was Disappointing'

Smith earned Oscar buzz for his turn in Concussion last year and is sure to have a hit on his hands with Suicide Squad this year, so it's safe to say his career is back on track. One person the actor revealed he has to thank for that? Muhammad Ali.

"He was unwilling to compromise for money, accolades, he was living his values rich or poor," he said of his late friend, whom Smith portrayed in the 2001 biopic, Ali.

"It was really beautiful for me to see how profoundly happy people were at his memorial and that's a result of him living his life with a purpose," he continued. "If someone stands at your funeral and says, 'His ROI [return on investment] was ridiculous,' you've failed."

ET spoke with Smith after Ali's "beautiful" funeral and the actor exclusively shared a touching memory with the late boxing legend. Watch in the video below.

SHARE ON FACEBOOK SHARE SHARE ON TWITTER TWEET