After being seemingly snubbed be the Academy (along with like, every other Black actor in Hollywood) his wife Jada took the #OscarsSoWhite conversation to the next level by declaring she would boycott the Academy Awards.
But this awards show moment was not about boycotts and protests. It was about celebration. Will received The Generation Award at the MTV Movie Awards this year, highlighting his nearly three-decades long career in music and film.
Queen Latifah introduced the actor, remembering her guest star appearance on Fresh Prince Of Bel Air and praising Will for being the “king of blockbuster movies.”
Halle Berry jumped on the stage next to triumphantly announce “We love everything about Will Smith” and called him, “The voice of a generation.”
“With every performance, we see his soul,” she expressed.
In his speech, he reaffirmed the importance of diversity and his drive to light up the world with his gifts.
“When I first heard MTV wanted to give me the generation award, I thought it was code for the old ass dude award,” he joked.
He gave a quick antidote about being in Brooklyn recently when a fan recognized him for being Jaden’s dad versus Will Smith.
He concluded saying,
“I released my first record when I was 17, and so I’m 47 years old, this June marks 30 years in this business for me,” he says. “In this world there is a lot of suffering, a lot of people are suffering in this world and when you see my material and when I present myself in public and what I’m trying to do with my family and my friends, I just want all of you to know that I am dedicated to till I die to light and love.”