Will Smith: “We Don’t Own Our Children”

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Will Smith and his 14-year-old son Jaden Smith strike a pose on the cover of New York magazine‘s Summer issue. The father-son duo – who are promoting their new film After Earth – open up about their relationship and fame.

Will, on parenting: “It is the excruciating parental pain of having to let your kids go, and you just have to hope that the lessons you’ve instilled will kick in at the right time…We don’t own our children, you know. They own themselves.”

Jaden, on fame: “I think it’s fun, except when people make up stuff about you. Then it’s not so much fun. But besides that, I enjoy it.”

Jaden, on his dad: He’s, like, really just cool. He lets us have our freedom as long as we can control our freedom.”

Will, on Willow: “She has a magic power in the family. She absolutely demands the most attention, and there’s ­something really incendiary about a 12-year-old girl who says and does what she wants.”

Will, on his kids’ fame: “It may seem like we have pushed our kids into the business, but that is absolutely insane. I would never, ever, push somebody to have their face on a poster that’s going be everywhere in the world. He is making a choice from the informed. It’s less scary to me than if he wanted to be a dentist in that I couldn’t help with what he’d chosen. I have relationships with some of the biggest filmmakers and actors and producers on Earth. So I can be a huge help.”

For more from Will and Jaden, visit New York magazine…

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Filed under: Featured,Jaden Smith,Will Smith

Photo credit: New York magazine

15 Comments »»

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  1. SMH

    So to put it better terms his kids only get to be actors because his parents know people. Meaning they dont have to work hard at it or even be good at it.
    Btw l agree in letting kids grow to make their own decisions but to be a parent means to parent. They come off as arrogant in all their interviews l have seen them in so l would say parenting NOT well done.

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      I don’t think that’s true.

      I’m sure Paris Hilton’s parents know people too… but look where her career went.

      On the flip side, all of the Trump kids have the advantage of parents that know people, but they clearly work hard, are intelligent and deserve their successes (just as much as their parents do).

      Reply
      • NYCMommy

        Dont see relevance in comparing show biz people with a Hotel Heir (Paris’ parents) and a Business Mogul (Donald Trump). Like comparing apples and oranges. all three move in totally different circles and FYI, Trumps kids were grown when he started his Apprentice franchise.

        Reply
      • Robin

        The trump kids are most definitely piggybacking off their parents too.

        Reply
    • LaKesha

      Have you ever known the children to be in any kind of trouble? No parenting is perfect, but to say that these two have not been good parents, you’re way off base.

      Reply
  2. Annie

    Most importantly, their kids do NOT seem well adjusted. Both look like they’re a mix of extreme insecurity and arrogance.
    It makes sense, when you have parents that let you make adult decisions, think you’re a genius, and expect success at such a young age.

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      I really do not know how you can say this. You don’t KNOW these kids and looking at a few pictures does not give you a sense of who they really are.

      Reply
  3. Missy

    I’m sorry, but I can’t stand that kid and the face he makes in every single picture, creasing his eyebrow and sticking his lips out. It’s not cute, Jaden.

    Reply
  4. anonymous

    I’ve seen both kids interviewed on Ellen and other shows and they were polite and well mannered. Nice kids. People are obviously jealous who make the nasty comments but these are celebrity kids who are so far from leading ordinary lives that being jealous isn’t worth it. They’re just too far away from anything the average person could ever hope to achieve. Let it go. You’ll feel better about yourself.

    Reply
  5. ally

    “It is the excruciating parental pain of having to let your kids go, and you just have to hope that the lessons you’ve instilled will kick in at the right time…We don’t own our children, you know. They own themselves.”

    I’d agree with this…if my child was 18, but not at 14 or 12. A young teenagers must be guided and boundaries must be set. Famous or not famous, a parents job is still the same, you cannot be your child’s best friend you have to be a parent and not worry if your child doesn’t like the rules, they don’t get a choice.

    Reply
  6. Hadley

    Every time someone says something unflattering about a celebrity, their apologists immediately reach for the “You must be jealous” tack. That’s so ridiculously lame. People sometimes don’t like other people. Period. No jealousy to it. I, for one, like Will Smith in general but I DO think that he worships himself and thinks himself far more educated and deep than he actually is. Most of the things that he and his wife say about parenting are pretentious things they’ve pulled right out of their butts. They can raise their kids any way they want but I’m tired of hearing them tell me that they corner the market on the “best” way. And I also DO think both of those kids have unbelievably huge egos. They’re probably fairly nice people but in interviews, they are obnoxious.

    Reply
  7. anon

    They r hardcore scientologists with this whole “let the kids decide what their boundaries are” stuff, with a crap load of money, their kids are doing whatever they want because of this under some guise of it being “fantastic parenting” . No “average” child would have the same access or opportunities and them, and is the main reason they are “famous” and in the music and acting scene, do you really think if they were nobodies they would have been discovered?

    Reply

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