Discover the dynamic duo: Alfonso Ribeiro, Dancing with the Stars host, and Will Smith, renowned Hollywood actor, who shared the spotlight on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
Alfonso Ribeiro’s Insights on His Friendship with Will Smith
It’s been more than three decades since Alfonso Ribeiro rose to fame as Will Smith‘s charming cousin, Carlton Banks, on the iconic television show “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” During the six-year run of the sitcom, their on-screen chemistry evolved into a genuine friendship that transcended the confines of the set.
However, as Will Smith soared to incredible heights in the entertainment industry, becoming a megastar in blockbuster movies, Alfonso, by his own admission, faced challenges in advancing his acting career. The question arises: What became of their enduring friendship in the face of such disparate career trajectories?
Let’s take a look at what the DWTS host has revealed regarding his friendship with Will Smith.
After The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, what happened to Alfonso Ribeiro?
After the show concluded its run in 1996, Alfonso held optimistic expectations that his star turn on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” would propel his acting career to new heights. Yet, he later candidly admitted that his portrayal of Carlton – renowned for his iconic dance – nearly derailed his future prospects in the acting world. Alfonso’s exceptional performance in the role had an unintended consequence: he found himself trapped in a typecasting predicament.
Reflecting on this, Alfonso, in a conversation with Pop Culture, shared his sentiments, saying, “When you do a role like Carlton, and people develop an affection for the character to the extent that they inform you that you can’t embody any other role because they can’t envision you as anyone else… it’s a formidable challenge to contend with.” He further expressed, “It was perplexing because I executed my role proficiently. I fulfilled my duties, making the audience genuinely believe in the character. That’s the essence of an actor’s craft.”
Did Will aid Alfonso in advancing his career?
Following Alfonso’s revelations about the challenges he faced in securing roles post-“The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” some voiced criticism, suggesting that Will Smith should have leveraged his fame and wealth to assist his friend and fellow co-stars. However, Alfonso opted to provide a different perspective during an appearance on “Sway In The Morning.“
In his defense of Will Smith, Alfonso conveyed, “Will Smith has extended his assistance to me in myriad ways that go beyond what the public has witnessed on camera. He has supported me in manners that surpass comprehension.”
Alfonso said he wouldn’t read Will’s memoirs
While Will Smith’s highly anticipated memoir, aptly titled “Will,” may have found its way onto countless bookshelves across the globe, one of those shelves did not belong to Alfonso Ribeiro. Within the pages of the book, Will offered an unfiltered glimpse into his life alongside his long-standing partner, Jada Pinkett-Smith, and their children, delving into even sensitive topics such as their son Jaden Smith’s request for emancipation.
When queried about whether he planned to peruse his friend’s candid literary work, Alfonso responded, “For many, many, many years, there have been speculations surrounding them as a family. They are now presenting their truth in a very candid manner. As for me, I’m uncertain if I’ll delve into the book, given that I already know the people involved.”
Is Alfonso Ribeiro still friends with Will Smith?
Undoubtedly, their enduring 30-year friendship remains as robust as ever. Alfonso Ribeiro shared insights into their close bond, remarking in a 2018 interview with Access, “I’ve known Will… perhaps for about 24 or 25 years, something along those lines. It’s been quite a substantial stretch.” Over the years, their connection has grown through collaborative work, shared experiences, leisure time, and even raising their families together. Alfonso added, “Will is an extraordinary individual, and whenever we’re together, it’s always a fantastic time.”
With the approaching 30th-anniversary special of their iconic show, Alfonso acknowledged the excitement among fans about the cast’s reunion. He candidly shared with Cinema Blend, “At the end of the day, I understand that everyone tends to view our gatherings as significant moments. However, I see it in a simple way; we’ve always stayed connected. We continuously communicate and consider ourselves a family. The upcoming special will undoubtedly be interesting and enjoyable, but for us, it’s just another instance of how we always come together.”
As a testament to their enduring friendship, Will Smith marked Alfonso’s 52nd birthday with a recent social media tribute on September 21st.