Will Smith is sorry for tricking you into seeing 'Wild Wild West'
Did you pay good money from your weekend job at Jamba Juice to see the universally-loathed 1999 adaptation of Wild Wild West, which one contemporary critic called “extremely stupid and incompetent” and another deemed a “colossal waste of talent”? If the answer is “yes,” then Will Smith is very, very sorry about that.
In a roundup of the actor’s Tuesday talk at the Cannes Lions marketing conference (a.k.a. “the only truly global meeting-place for branded communications professionals to connect, share and discover,” whew!), THR reports that Smith “repeatedly brought up 1999's Wild Wild West as a personal low point,” and they aren’t kidding. Though the superstar has been involved in other notable stinkers such as The Legend of Bagger Vance and After Earth, he clearly holds a special place of unquenchable scorn in his heart for the millennial stinker, which saw him starring opposite such other slumming talents as Kevin Kline, Kenneth Branagh, and a giant mechanical spider.
“I had so much success that I started to taste global blood and my focus shifted from my artistry to winning. I wanted to win and be the biggest movie star, and what happened was there was a lag — around Wild Wild West time — I found myself promoting something because I wanted to win versus promoting something because I believed in it,” Smith told the “enraptured audience.”
The Bad Boys II actor went on to address the modern-day scourge of social media, which no longer allows him to hoodwink unsuspecting members of the public into seeing his terrible films:
“Smoke and mirrors in marketing and sales is over. People are going to know really quickly and globally whether a product keeps its promises,” he said, throwing his lot in amongst the roomful of advertising execs. "I consider myself a marketer. My career has been strictly being able to sell my products globally, and it's now in the hand of fans. I have to be in tune with their needs and not trick them into going to see Wild Wild West.”
“Back in the '80s and '90s you had a piece of crap movie you put a trailer with a lot of explosions and it was Wednesday before people knew your movie was s--t,” Smith said. “But now what happens is 10 minutes into the movie, people are tweeting ‘This is s--t, go see Vin Diesel'.”
No word yet on whether Smith plans to apologize for the Wild Wild West theme song.