The entertainment business does not, in my opinion, have many positive role models for young people. Will Smith, however, happens to be one. He started out as a teenager writing rap songs. His parents had instilled in him that the key to success is a good education, self-discipline, a healthy work ethic and confidence. Even when he began writing rap songs his grandmother cautioned him, that he should keep his rap lyrics clean and not use profanity. By the time he was twenty years old he had made and lost a fortune. He vowed to learn from his mistakes and to move on with his life. His next major opportunity was the lead role in the TV show Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. This was a real boost to his career but also a challenge because he was working with seasoned professionals. The TV show was a success and continued for several seasons. But Will knew that he had to become versatile if he was to become a big star. Over the past several years he has appeared in a variety of roles, enhancing his career. In addition, he is deeply committed to his wife and children. This book offers young people an opportunity to look at a prominent young person who is making an impact on our modern times. The book is part of the "People in the News" series. 2003, Lucent Books, Ages 8 to 12.
Gr 6 Up-Smith has clearly led a charmed life, both personally and professionally. This biography shows how his personality and talent for comedy have led him to become one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood. Readers learn of his middle-class upbringing in Philadelphia and his rise to stardom first as a rapper, then as the star of a TV sitcom, and finally superstardom in Independence Day and Men in Black. This sort of material is difficult to present in a consistently interesting way, but the author does give readers a sense of how Smith worked hard to be taken seriously as an actor. The book includes extensive source notes. Black-and-white photos of Smith in his various roles are sprinkled throughout. This volume will be useful in libraries where celebrity biographies are in demand.-Tim Wadham, Maricopa County Library District, Phoenix, AZ Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.