Will Smith is reportedly working on a ‘Fresh Prince of Bel-Air‘ spin-off series
Will Smith, aka Mr. July, has transformed the film industry with his acting, movies, and productions. Now, the ‘Gemini Man’ is expanding his brand by making new and different investments and opportunities.
In 2016, Will Smith was at a pivotal time in his career. After 30 years in the film industry, he was struggling to remain unbeaten after three movies, ‘Concussion,’ ‘Focus’ and ‘After Earth’ failed to connect with audiences. Then, ‘Collateral Beauty’ happened, making it the worst film opening in his acting career.
Things were not looking too high for the actor. Smith, then starred in Netflix’s ‘Bright,’ which was the spark to reignite his acting career. Smith earned $27 million upfront, which is double what Warner Bros. would pay for Smith to appear in his movie, and the film allowed him to reach international audiences in 190 countries.
Will Smith Social Media Impact
After seeing The Rock’s social media success, he pressed his agency to surround him with a team that can build a social media presence. The next year he gained over 38 million followers on Instagram 77 million on Facebook and 6.75 million on YouTube. The actor has focused on creating content and becoming an A-list actor in the digital age. In the past two years, Smith has changed his brand with web videos allowing him to build a following of over 100 hundred million.
His hard work is paying off. Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter, Smith made $12.5 million upfront and a significant backend deal. He now has twice as many video videos as the most famous person on Instagram. 12 to 20% of all online trailer views for Disney’s ‘Aladdin‘ came from Will Smith’s social media presence. The movie would later make $1.05 billion globally. Thus, Illustrating how his social media following is essential to the commercial success of his films and TV shows.
Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Spinoff
Westbrook, the company that curates Smith’s social media content, is now being hired by studios. Westbrook is developing a ‘Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ spinoff series, The Hollywood Reporter reports.
“In addition to producing Smith-fronted film projects,” the Reporter writes, “Westbrook is developing a Fresh Prince of Bel-Air spinoff series (he still earns hefty royalties from the 1990s NBC sitcom, now licensed to air in 193 territories).” Westbrook is Smith’s “cross-platform holding company” that he manages with actress/his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
But, Smith is doing more than focusing on building a movie career; the actor is investing in start-ups. Smith’s Dreamers venture capital fund invests in dozens of startups, including Sandbox VR, Flockjay, and NuRx.