Celebs Who Have Clashed With The Smith Family

It's impossible to measure who's the most likable family in Hollywood. All we know for sure is that it isn't the Kardashians. But with their critically acclaimed creative projects and circle of famous friends, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith's brood might be in the running.

It all starts with Will's megawatt movie stardom. He describes how he became the biggest movie star in the world in his memoir, "Will." A hefty chunk of his success comes down to his talent and charm, as anyone who's watched "Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" can attest. But what really put him over the edge in terms of career success was his strategy: he decided to monitor the press activity of the biggest movie star in the world, Tom Cruise, and do two hours more promotion than Cruise did every day (via Insider).

There's nothing wrong with a little friendly rivalry, and the strategy worked. Will now holds the world record for most consecutive box office hits grossing more than $100 million (he had eight in a row), per The Guardian. But his strategy of competing with Cruise — even if Cruise didn't know it — proves something: the Smiths aren't afraid of conflict. Although the whole family is in the business of being liked, Will and Jada, along with their kids Willow Smith and Jaden Smith, aren't afraid to clash with their peers. And they might even tell you all about it on Jada and Willow's successful Facebook show "Red Table Talk" afterward.

50 Cent wishes Will and Jada would stop talking about their sex life

Jada Pinkett Smith had "an entanglement" with actor August Alsina when she and Will Smith were separated, as she admitted on "Red Table Talk." Jada addressed Alsina's claims that Will had given his blessing for the relationship four-and-a-half years prior, while Jada specified that "the only person that can give permission in that particular circumstance is myself." It was a messy he-said-she-said that dominated gossip blogs in summer 2020.

Social media users were riveted by the news, and rapper 50 Cent was one of them. He DMed Will about the situation — and Will ended up cursing him, according to 50 Cent's Instagram account. 50 Cent asked why Jada "[told him] that sh*t on a show for everybody to see," adding, "Then she said only SHE can give permission for someone to blow her back out" with a shrug emoji. Will responded with more profanity in one message than he's used over the course of his entire rap career, saying, "F*** you 50."

In October 2021, 50 Cent decided once again to comment on the Smiths' marriage. Jada agreed with Gwyneth Paltrow on "Red Table Talk" that one "pitfall" of marriage is expecting one's partner to be a mind-reader, "especially when it comes to sex." 50 Cent posted about this on his Instagram Story, per Complex, adding the caption, "Why she keep doing sh*t like this? it makes the relationship appear weak. first a entanglement now this, come on! WTF." The Smiths opted not to respond this time around.

Lena Waithe said Will Smith should help make more Black-led films

Actor Tessa Thompson credits Will Smith with breaking new ground for Black actors in Hollywood. "​​We take it for granted now, but when Will Smith was in [Men in Black], it was hugely impactful in terms of what it told Hollywood at that time for a young Black man to bring his identity to a studio film," Thompson said at a 2019 BUILD Series talk. She added, "I'm not sure that I would have known that I could do what I do if Will Smith hadn't been on television every week in 'The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' or in this film originally."

But other young Black show business luminaries think he could be doing more. Lena Waithe directed the thriller "Queen & Slim" in 2019. She noted that Brad Pitt's production company funded the critical Black-led films "12 Years a Slave" and "Moonlight." "Wasn't Denzel. Wasn't Will Smith," she told The New York Times. "You won't catch me making $20 million a movie and not paying for at least four or five independent movies a year."

Smith hasn't responded to the critique. He does have his own production company under the umbrella of Westbrook Inc., but he's often used it to make films starring himself. Waithe went on to attract some criticism of her own after fans accused her of gratuitous violence befalling Black characters in "Queen & Slim" and later the Amazon series "Them," which Waithe produced, per Slate.

Alexis Arquette found the couple hypocritical

When Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith announced they were boycotting the Oscars in 2016 due to the lack of Black nominees in acting categories, it proved to be one of their most controversial moments. "I think that diversity is the American superpower. That's why we're great. So many different people from so many different places adding their ideas, their inspiration, and their influences to this beautiful American gumbo," Will told Robin Roberts for "Good Morning America" at the time. "And for me, at its best, Hollywood represents and then creates the imagery for that beauty. But for my part, I think that I have to protect and fight for the ideals that make our country — and make our Hollywood community — great."

While some applauded the boycott, actor Alexis Arquette released a controversial statement of her own on Facebook. She accused both Will and Jada of being gay and said that when they come out, "then I will listen to them" (via Lainey Gossip). "You are either with us or against us," Arquette continued. "You decide. Today."

The Smiths apparently decided to ignore Arquette, who later deleted the post.

Chris Rock poked the pair for not attending the Oscars

Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith's Oscars boycott remained a topic of conversation up to and including the night of the 2016 Academy Awards. That year's host, Chris Rock, targeted the couple with a few funny jabs about their decision not to attend, but Rock still supported the important movement for representation at the Oscars.

He seemed to agree with the Smiths' complaints that the nominations weren't diverse enough, calling the Academy Awards "the white people's choice awards" (via Entertainment Tonight). Then, he turned his attention to Jada. "Isn't she on a TV show?" he said. The Oscars do not give awards for television. Then came the punchline: "Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna's panties. I wasn't invited!"

Rock continued on to say that he understands it was "not fair" that Will wasn't nominated for his film that year, "Concussion," adding, "It's also not fair that Will was paid $20 million for 'Wild Wild West.'" Rock was referring to Will's critically panned 1999 film, which famed reviewer Roger Ebert called "​​a comedy dead zone."

Stacey Dash disliked Jada and Will Smith's Oscars boycott

Like Will Smith, Stacey Dash started her career as a comedic actor in the '90s (her biggest vehicle was 1995's "Clueless"). But their two paths couldn't have diverged more: while Will moved from sitcom star to movie star, Dash opted to go the political route as a commentator on Fox News.

And when Will and Jada Pinkett Smith announced they were boycotting the Oscars in 2016, Dash joined the chorus of voices criticizing the two stars. Dash said on Fox News' "Outnumbered," "The real issue is that there aren't enough opportunities for us, people of color, to have roles where it warrants us winning an Oscar." She continued, "And then my second point of view is, either you want to be segregated or you want to be integrated, and if you want to be integrated, then you don't need to have things like BET or the BET Awards, or the Image Awards, where you have to be Black in order to win these..." Similarly, Dash went on "Fox & Friends" to say that the Smiths' decision was "ludicrous," going so far as to claim Black History Month wasn't necessary.

Once again, the Smiths took the high road and decided not to comment. Critics speculated that Will would not only be nominated for an Oscar in 2022, but would win, thanks to his film "King Richard."

JR Smith wanted Will Smith to do more for Black Lives Matter

Will Smith once again became a magnet for controversy during summer 2020, when Black Lives Matter protests dominated the news. JR Smith, a former professional basketball player, took Will to task via Instagram for not getting involved early in the summer (archived on YouTube). "Where the f*** is Oprah? Where the f*** is Will Smith?" he said. "Y'all are not saying nothing. You are not giving us no words of encouragement. No nothing." JR, for his part, was vocal about the protests early on and even agreed to pay a police bill sent to an activist in New Jersey.

Of course, Will might have had other things on his mind: summer 2020 was when Jada Pinkett Smith's infamous extramarital "entanglement" with August Alsina first became public, and the Smiths were in damage-control mode. But he still became involved later on in the summer, throwing his full weight behind the Black Lives Matter movement and speaking up about his own alleged experience with racist cops, which he discussed with political commentator Angela Rye.

Leah Remini and Jada Pinkett Smith beefed over Scientology but seem cordial now

Leah Remini is not just an actor and entertainer; she's an outspoken critic of Scientology. There were rumors Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith were Scientologists for years, which Remini discussed in her book, "Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology." She brought it up again when speaking to the Daily Beast in 2017. "I know Jada's in," she said. "I know Jada's in. She's been in Scientology a long time. I never saw Will there, but I saw Jada at the Celebrity Centre [in Hollywood]. They opened up a Scientology school, and have since closed it. But Jada, I had seen her at the Scientology Celebrity Centre all the time." 

Jada hit back via Twitter, naming all of the houses of worship she's visited without being a member of each organized religion. She concluded, "I have studied Dianetics, and appreciate the merits of Study Tech... but I am not a Scientologist." But a year later, Remini got in touch with Jada to clear the air, per People, and Jada invited her to appear on "Red Table Talk" to hash things out. 

After the fact, Jada explained how they connected during their chat. "What was really emotional about it was realizing that there was two broken little girls in us that were abandoned by their fathers and turned into fighters who clashed," Jada told People.

Will Smith and his former co-star Janet Hubert had a legendary feud

On "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," Will Smith clashed with co-star Janet Hubert, who played his character's Aunt Viv from 1990 to 1993. Many believed their personal issues led Hubert to get the boot after the show's third season. "I can say straight up that Janet Hubert wanted the show to be The Aunt Viv of Bel-Air Show because I know she is going to dog me in the press," Smith allegedly told an Atlanta radio station at the time (via The Sun). "No matter what, to her I'm just the Antichrist," he added.

Hubert didn't correct him. Instead, their public beef continued. The actor maintained that she wanted the cast to bargain for higher salaries together on "The Fresh Prince," but Smith wasn't into it. Hubert even weighed in on the Smiths' 2016 Oscars boycott. "...you're talking about boycotting just because you didn't get a nomination, just because you didn't win?" she said in a now deleted video. She also said, "​​You ain't Barack and Michelle Obama. And y'all need to get over yourselves" (per The Hollywood Reporter, via CNN).

But in 2020, HBO Max aired a reunion special commemorating "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," leading Smith and Hubert to finally bury the hatchet (as replayed on "Red Table Talk"). Hubert opened up about the personal struggles that prompted her to leave the show. "The person I want to be is someone who protects you," Smith replied, "not someone that unleashes dogs on you."

Jaden Smith and YouTuber Shane Dawson clashed after Dawson's lewd video

YouTuber Shane Dawson has had plenty of controversial moments, including racial slurs and blackface. And one of his worst moments involved the Smith family. In 2020, the internet banded together to gather all of Dawson's most cringeworthy past remarks and actions, uncovering a foul clip involving then-11-year-old Willow Smith. In the video, Dawson pretends to masturbate to a poster of Willow from her "Whip My Hair" era, as reported by the Independent.

When the clip resurfaced, Jada Pinkett Smith tweeted, "To Shane Dawson..... I'm done with excuses." Jaden quote-tweeted his mother and responded to Dawson in a slew of since-deleted tweets. "You sexualizing an 11-year-old girl who happens to be my sister... is the furthest thing from funny and not OK in the slightest bit," Jaden tweeted (via the Independent).

It seems the Smiths got the last laugh on this one, though. Dawson posted an apology video on Twitter, but YouTube stopped allowing him to make money from ads on their platform, according to the BBC, and his stint as one of the top YouTube stars is clearly a relic of the 2010s.

Gabrielle Union and Jada Pinkett Smith fought quietly for years

Gabrielle Union and Jada Pinkett Smith had parallel acting careers and often ran into each other at events. But Smith always noticed an awkward vibe. "​​She and I did not talk for 17 years and we could not remember why," Smith told Essence. "There was just tension between us every time we would see each other. There was some moment that we had that just left a bad taste in both of our mouths."

Smith called Union to clear the air, but she explained to Essence, "When we got on the phone to try to figure out what it was we could not figure it out!" She concluded, "It was just us being young, divas." Smith invited Union onto "Red Table Talk" to hash it out. "I had to just apologize, and just thinking to myself, 'Damn, Jada! That was some petty-ass sh*t," Smith told Union on the show. "But, at the same time going, 'Well, that's where you were then. Thank God you're someplace else now.'"

Union later appeared on "Today" and said, "​​Even though we're both very outspoken women, we're both activists, our husbands are friends... we both felt we had too much pride and too much insecurities to just say, 'Hey, did that ever actually happen or was that a creation of someone else who did not want to see two women rise together?'" The two women are now friends.