Will Smith has broken his silence on his relationship with estranged wife Jada Pinkett-Smith as more revelations from her new memoir, Worthy, have come to light. In am e-mail sent to the New York Times, Smith addressed his turbulent relationship with with Pinkett-Smith, who says in her memoir that the two had been separated since 2016. Her memoir “kind of woke him up,” said Smith, adding that his wife “is more resilient, clever and compassionate” than he’d previously understood.
During her press tour for Worthy, which is out October 17, Pinkett-Smith revealed that she and her husband had been separated for six years prior to the 2022 Oscars, where Will Smith infamously stormed the stage and slapped Chris Rock after the comedian made a joke about Pinkett-Smith’s shaved head. In an interview with the New York Times, Pinkett-Smith said Smith and Rock’s incident was a “spiritual clash” that pre-dated her relationship with either of them, but that she ultimately stood with her estranged husband. “Even though we hadn’t been calling each other husband and wife in a long time, I said, ‘I’m his wife now. We in this.’ That’s just who I am,” she said. “That’s the gift I have to offer, like, ‘Hey, I’m riding with you.’”
In an e-mail to the New York Times, Smith said that his wife’s memoir made him realize that she “lived a life more on the edge than he’d realized.”
“When you’ve been with someone for more than half of your life,” he added, “a sort of emotional blindness sets in, and you can all too easily lose your sensitivity to their hidden nuances and subtle beauties.”
The couple met in 1994, when Pinkett-Smith auditioned to play Smith’s girlfriend on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. They were married in her hometown of Baltimore on New Year’s Eve in 1997. In an upcoming sit-down with Hoda Kotb titled Jada’s Story—An NBC News Special, Pinkett-Smith reveals that while she and Smith still currently “live separately,” she has no plans for a divorce. “I made a promise that there will never be a reason for us to get a divorce,” she says. “We will work through whatever. And I just haven’t been able to break that promise.”