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Will Smith is 50: here are five of his unforgettable moments

BIRTHDAY: Will Smith turns 50 years old today

THE MAN who made us laugh as the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, in Bad Boys I and II, introduced us to new world’s in After Earth, Men in Black and Independence Day, made us cry and root for him in The Pursuit of Happyness, and again in I am Legend turns 50 years old today.

Willard Carroll Smith Jr, yes, that’s his full name if you didn’t know, has been entertaining us for 30 years.

While Will Smith will be celebrating his milestone birthday by jumping out of a helicopter over the Grand Canyon – it’s all part of a charity fundraiser in aid of Education Cannot Wait and will be live streamed – we’re looking back at some of the films that have made him such a lovable character and secured his place in Hollywood history.

The Fresh Prince of Bel Air
This is the role that introduced the world to Smith. It also gave us the Carlton Dance and that unforgettable theme tune. If you can’t complete the line beginning “In West Philadelphia”, it’s safe to say you haven’t watched enough of the show – and definitely aren’t a fan, which would leave you in the minority. Re-runs of the much-loved show aired years after it was taken off the air. We’re sure it’s still showing somewhere.

The Pursuit of Happyness
Smith’s portrayal of American businessman Chris Gardner took his career to new heights. He stunned the world with his acting abilities in this film, which follows a Gardner’s incredible rags-to-riches story. Smith’s real-life son Jaden plays his son in the film – and he is adorable. If you’re going to watch it again – or for the first time, make sure you have a box of tissues ready, or two!

Bad Boys
There have been rumours of a Bad Boys 3 aka Bad Boys for Life for what feels like forever. The latest news is that it’s set for a 2020 release. Watch the first one and you’ll know why fans are so desperate for a third film in the franchise. Smith (Mike Lowrey) and Martin Lawrence (Marcus Burnett) are the perfect buddy cop pair in this fierce and funny action film.

Men in Black
This iconic otherworldly buddy film is set for a reboot with Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth, something’s that’s undeniable possible thanks to the success Smith made it while starring alongside Tommy Lee Jones. He shone brightly in this 90s film – and he even lent his vocals to the soundtrack with the title song. It’s full of laughs and one for the whole family.

I am Legend
Ten years after the first Men in Black, Smith was showing us a whole new world, one where a disease wiped out most of the human race and turned many into human eating mutants. All sounds very bleak – and it is for the most part – but despite there being very few humans, the film has a lot of humanity, and that’s down to Smith. He truly lived up to the film’s title with this performance.

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