6 Times Will Smith Made You Cry

For every Bad Boys role, Smith counters them with heavy duty, though-provoking drama. He can be introspective, vulnerable, broken, resilient, wounded, defiant all within a flash of those expressive eyes that are guaranteed to move you and leave you in tears.
1. ALI

Without doubt, Smith’s most celebrated role and the one that garnered him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. Not many actors would have the acting chops, physical presence and stamina to pull off portraying the legend that is Muhammad Ali. 

Initially Smith turned down the role, but then Ali gave Smith a call to personally ask him to take the role, stating that Smith was the only one good looking enough to play him. Obviously the two of them bonded over this incredible project because when the boxing legend died in June 2016, Will Smith served as a pallbearer at his funeral. 

2. COLLATERAL BEAUTY

Will Smith has played dads in movies before but in Collateral Beauty he really digs deep to pull out a paternal performance of unprecedented sensitivity and pain. Without any spoilers, this highly original tale is a passion project for Smith, tapping into themes of loss, bereavement, redemption and rebirth. 

If this sounds deep, don’t be put off, it’s created and delivered in such a fresh, affecting and involving way that you’ll be drawn into the story – and moved beyond belief by Smith’s powerhouse performance.

3. THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS

Like Collateral Beauty, Will Smith displays his fierce, undying love for his child in this magnificently realised father and son story - made even more touching by the fact that his screen son is played by his real-life son, Jaden.
 
The Pursuit of Happyness is based on a heart-breaking true story about a man who loses his wife, house, bank account; and is forced to live on the streets with his son. This searing drama shows how one man will overcome all odds so his child can have a better life. The Pursuit of Happyness gave Smith his 2nd Best Actor Oscar nomination

4. I AM LEGEND

A true genre hybrid, on the surface I Am Legend looks like a typical dystopian horror thriller, but look closer and it reveals itself as an intimate drama of one man’s fight - for his sanity, for his survival, for his future. 

I Am Legend has become a benchmark classic and a precursor to the plethora of Zombiefest titles like World War Z and The Walking Dead. It’s rare that a big budget CGI laden blockbuster can be so moving. And this is all due to Smith’s performance. He throws so much believability into his performance that he makes you care about his quest for survival.

5. SEVEN POUNDS

In a role that Tom Hanks auditioned for, Will Smith is a man haunted by a secret, looking for redemption by radically transforming the lives of seven people he doesn't know. 

Director Gabriele Muccino was attracted to the story because it tells of a mysterious personal journey of a man consumed by remorse and the pain of having lost a loved one. Muccino has stated that the only actor he thought capable of giving the film its strength and raw emotional power was Will Smith.

6. CONCUSSION

What if the sport you loved killed you? Will Smith plays real life brain trauma specialist Dr. Bennet Omalu, who uncovered one of the greatest cover-ups in sports history. This is the shocking true story of how pro NFL players suffered brain damage from repetitive concussion. 

This David vs. Goliath battle exemplifies Smith’s commitment to playing real men who will risk everything to reveal the truth. Critics raved about Smith’s accomplished portrayal of a real life hero.

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