Will Smith’s ‘Heart Shattered’ When Son Asked to be an Emancipated at 15
Will Smith recalled the moment his “heart shattered” as a father.
The “King Richard” actor got candid about parenting and the struggles he’s faced with his family in his upcoming memoir, “Will.”
In an excerpt obtained by People, Smith recalled his youngest son, Jaden, facing media scrutiny after the pair’s 2013 film “After Earth” flopped at the box office.
“‘After Earth’ was an abysmal box office and critical failure,” Smith, 53, wrote. “And what was worse was that Jaden took the hit. Fans and the press were absolutely vicious; they said and printed things about Jaden that I refuse to repeat. Jaden had faithfully done everything that I’d instructed him to do, and I had coached him into the worst public mauling he’d ever experienced.”
Smith noted that he believed Jaden felt “betrayed” afterward, People reported.
“He felt misled, and he lost his trust in my leadership,” Smith wrote. Smith added that Jaden asked about being emancipated as a minor at 15.
“At fifteen years old, when Jaden asked about being an emancipated minor, my heart shattered. He ultimately decided against it, but it sucks to feel like you’ve hurt your kids,” Smith wrote, according to People.
Representatives for Will Smith and Jaden Smith did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
Smith shares Jaden, 23, and daughter Willow, 21, with Jada Pinkett Smith. He and his former wife, Sheree Zampino, also share a son, 28-year-old Trey Smith.
Smith and Jaden have worked together on other projects, including their roles in the 2006 film, “The Pursuit of Happyness.”