Bel-Air creator Morgan Cooper and season two showrunner Carla Banks Waddles are defending govt producer Will Smith following criticisms of his character after he slapped Chris Rock onstage on the 2022 Oscars.
In a brand new interview printed forward of the second season debut of Bel-Air on Feb. 24, Cooper spoke to Yahoo! Leisure in regards to the help Smith has given the present and its artistic workforce day in and time out. For the present’s author and director, he’s “acquired nothing however good issues to say about Will.”
“Will is a good man, and he’s demonstrated that along with his actions all through the entire Bel-Air improvement course of, again when this was simply my quick movie,” Cooper defined. “I’ve seen the content material of his character on a day-to-day foundation with this crew, this forged, my producing companions, the community and the studio.”
Morgan added that when it got here to Smith’s habits finally yr’s Oscars — an incident that resulted in a 10-year ban from the ceremony for the actor — there may be “a lot taking place on this planet proper now,” and amid that folks make errors.
“That was a really human second that happened [at the Oscars], however human moments occur — no one’s excellent, and it’s necessary to not be judgmental,” he mentioned.
Waddles, a co-executive producer for the primary season and the two-season sequence’ fourth showrunner — following the departures of Chris Collins early within the sequence improvement course of, and TJ Brady and Rasheed Newson, who co-helmed the primary season — additionally supported Smith as skilled on the sequence.
She instructed the outlet that Smith’s actions didn’t have any severe influence on the fruition of the present’s second season. “The present has taken on a lifetime of its personal, and has change into necessary to so many individuals,” Waddles mentioned. “There are such a lot of causes for it to achieve success, in order that didn’t concern me in any respect.”
The incident did reportedly influence a number of different tasks Smith had within the works, together with Netflix’s crime drama Quick and Free, which had already misplaced its director David Leitch, and Apple TV+ enslavement drama Emancipation, which hit the streamer late final yr. Following the March 2022 ceremony, Unhealthy Boys 4 was additionally reportedly on maintain, however on Jan. 31, each Smith and co-star Martin Lawerence introduced their reunion for the subsequent franchise chapter.
Talking to how supportive Smith has been of the manufacturing, Waddles added that “we’re nonetheless in a position to inform tales along with his character and all the unique Contemporary Prince legacy characters. We nonetheless have the liberty to do what we wish to do creatively and inform tales which might be necessary to us.”
In the end, no matter what occurred on the Oscars, Smith and the Bel-Air workforce have a “proud” partnership, Cooper mentioned.
“Day in and time out, I’ve seen a man who’s dedicated to excellence and dedicated to placing individuals within the place to do their finest work. That’s been Will since Day 1, and I’m very proud to be in partnership with him.”