Will Smith Rejected a Hand Double Only to Master This Scene Himself in ‘The Pursuit of Happyness’

Published 09/26/2023, 9:36 AM EDT

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Will Smith is not just any actor in Hollywood, he is an Oscar-winning, highly dedicated one. A master at his craft, the 55-year-old proved his dynamic mettle with movies such as Men In Black and King Richard. Balancing humor and seriousness, the actor has always outshined every role he was cast in with his sheer dedication. One striking example of this is 2006’s The Pursuit of Happyness.

The emotional weight of the movie drew out Smith’s action brilliance. Additionally, it also went on to prove the actor’s dedication when he insisted on mastering his skills to do this one scene himself.

Will Smith went above and beyond to hone his skills for The Pursuit of Happyness

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The Gabriele Muccino-directed American drama involved a struggling father trying to make ends meet and provide for his son. As the movie progressed, it went on to become a matter of life or death for the actor’s character and his family. Along the lines of this tension, a scene had Smith solving the Rubik’s cube. While the initial plan involved having Will Smith use a hand double for that scene, the actor rejected the idea and instead went on to master the craft and have his own hand filmed.

In a 2007 interview with the Chicago Tribune, Tyson Mao, an expert on the cube, explained it in more detail. Enlisted as his hand double, Mao ended up teaching Smith the method to solve it and the results were astounding. The actor took upon his acquired skills innately and was able to solve them within just ten hours of practice. “You can scramble it for as long as you want, and it won’t make it any harder for him.” Mao applauded the sheer brilliance and education of the actor. 

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Thus, it shall come as no surprise that his acting eventually went on to win him an Oscar nomination for the same movie. Moreover, after finally winning the Best Actor Award at the Academy in 2022, the actor is not resting anytime soon.

After the Oscar debacle, here are the upcoming movies starring the Oscar-winning actor

Will Smith has had quite a tumultuous run lately. Especially at the 2022 Academy Awards. The event saw the Emancipation actor being both criticized and praised. A few moments before winning the Best Actor Oscar for King Richard, Smith found himself embroiled in a controversy with the host, Chris Rock. Regardless, soon after, came his apologies and a list of movies to reclaim his name.

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Hitting right off the bat with nostalgia and fun, Smith is all set to reprise his role as Mike Lowrey in Bad Boys 4. After that, he will again reprise his decades-old role with I Am Legend 2. Alongside he also is starring in Fast and Loose. All the aforementioned films are in varying stages of production. Meanwhile, the actor is having the time of his life with a tryst at vlogging.

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What do you think of Will Smith’s dedication to his acting? Let us know in the comments below.

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Imteshal Karim

844 articles

Imteshal Karim is a Hollywood News reporter at NetflixJunkie. With a penchant for writing in multiple forms, he is a published writer with his works published in anthologies. A star at his college’s writing competitions, he loves telling a good story and hopes to tell impactful ones about the unexplored side of the Entertainment industry.

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