The Truth About Will Smith's Relationship With His Oldest Son

Actor Will Smith is well known for his fair share of controversies. Although he made headlines for his infamous slap of Chris Rock at the 2022 Academy Awards, Will has also been the subject of scrutiny for years for his relationship with his wife, actor Jada Pinkett Smith, as well as their two young children: daughter Willow and son Jaden. 

For one, Will and his wife received some backlash in 2020 after it was revealed the private school his two children attended seemed to have links to Scientology. In addition, Jaden even asked to be emancipated from his parents at the age of 15 (though this request never led anywhere). And in 2019, Will was accused by his wife of making "insensitive" comments about their daughter, particularly about her menstruation cycle. 

But many fans may not know the story about Will's other son, Trey. And, the truth is, just like his other children, Will Smith's relationship with him is complicated. 

Will Smith is very close with his son Trey

Although it is his younger children — Jaden and Willow — who have more clout to their names, Will Smith actually had a lesser-known son in 1992 with his first wife, Sheree Zampino, to whom he was married from 1992 to 1995. Their son Trey was named after Will, as Trey's birth name is Willard Carroll Smith III, per IMDb. Trey arguably made his first big break in 1998, when he starred in the music video for "Just the Two of Us," a song co-written and performed by his father about the relationships between fathers and sons. The video also included Will's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, who was then pregnant with their son Jaden. 

Trey then went on to appear in multiple episodes of "All of Us," a sitcom created by Will and Jada, loosely based on their blended family. The eldest Smith son also has a good relationship with his stepmother, as she has even made heartwarming and public tributes to him on his birthdays. In 2021, she even called Trey her "bonus son."

In 2019, Will also revealed that he used to shoot parodies of "The Matrix" called "The Treytrix" in which Trey had to defend his family from an evil Will, determined to kill him. He even shared an example of one of the videos on his Instagram page. However, despite their wholesome bonding, the relationship between the famous father-son duo has not always been so strong.

Will Smith says he and Trey 'struggled for years'

Given how his parents divorced when he was only 3, Trey Smith's relationship with his father Will has surely not been entirely rosy from the get-go. In fact, in 2018, while on a trip to Abu Dhabi with Trey, Will opened up about his past with his oldest son. 

"It has not always been like this between Trey & I," he wrote in an Instagram post, referring to the positive relationship they share. "We STRUGGLED FOR YEARS after my Divorce from his Mother. He felt betrayed & abandoned. It is a Wild Blessing to recover & restore a Loving Relationship with My Beautiful Son!" Indeed, in the corresponding video he posted, Will spoke about how Trey opened up to him during their trip, even saying that he thought of him as his "best friend." 

"[Trey] said, 'You know what, Dad?'" Will said in the video. "'I just realized, you're not just my dad ... I'm pretty sure you're my best friend." Smith proceeded to get emotional while recounting the story, responding, "Probably. Probably." Given all the ups and downs Will Smith and his family have faced in the past, they seem to be as united as ever, and are arguably a shining example of how a blended family could be. As Trey says, "Fam Forever."