Will Smith has just released more footage from his emotional confab with Janet Hubert on the Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air reunion.
The two of them emotionally ended their 27-year feud during the HBO Max special – with clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula on hand at the scene.
In a new Red Table Talk with Ramani out Friday, Will, 52, broke down the feud and shared some heartrending never-before-seen outtakes from his talk with Janet.
Letting it out: Will Smith has just released more footage from his emotional confab with Janet Hubert on the Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air reunion
During the conversation, which was taped in September but streamed this Thursday, Will could be seen telling Janet that ‘I felt like you hated me.’
On the new Red Table Talk, Will aired a tearful bit of Janet’s response that was not included on the HBO Max special.
‘I hated what you did. I just hated what you did. You took my career away of 30-something years,’ she said, struggling not to cry.
‘You just went too far when you were younger and I know you always had to win,’ she said, referring to the way her professionalism was smeared during the feud.
Burying the hatchet: The two of them emotionally ended their 27-year feud during the HBO Max special – with clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula on hand at the scene
Will confessed that he ‘went way too far and said things to people that wouldn’t know how to hold that information, and then once you put it in, then the machine grabs it. Then they start putting their own spin on it.’
Janet also said the feud resulted in ’30 years of shunning’ and likened her situation to a ’30-year life sentence,’ sharing: ‘I’m so tired from all of this.’
In another outtake from the reunion special she said that ‘black people beat my a**’ over the feud, having taken Will’s side.
‘They beat my son’s a**. Somebody smashed a cookie in my son’s face and said: “Your mother is a b****.” People send me hateful Instagrams. “Aren’t you dead yet? I love Will. Why don’t you just die?” It was hard. It was hard’ she said.
Looking back: In a new Red Table Talk with Ramani out Friday, Will, 52, broke down the feud and shared some heartrending never-before-seen outtakes from his talk with Janet
‘And I promised my dad before he left this earth – and you know, you lost your dad – that I would clear my name ’cause it’s his name and my family said: “You’ve ruined our name.” But you’re the big star, you know? I’m just the old black b****.’
She and Will became so overcome that they decided to leave the set briefly, take a break to get Janet some water and then resume the chat.
On Red Table Talk with Ramani, Will traced his feud back to his own childhood when he alleged his mother Carolyn was being abused by his father Willard.
The movie star said that he became a jokester as a way of diverting his father’s attention so he would not ‘hurt my mother or anybody in the house.’
Candor: ‘You just went too far when you were younger and I know you always had to win,’ she said, referring to the way her professionalism was smeared during the feud
Now when ‘someone comes at me’ his ‘defense mechanism’ is either to get ‘people laughing’ or to ‘cut you bad enough’ that ‘you wouldn’t be able to respond.’
He transplanted this ‘family dynamic’ to the set of The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air – in particular with Janet since she was playing Aunt Viv, a ‘parental figure.’
Will felt intimidated by Janet because she was a Julliard-educated triple threat, added to which the show was helping him climb out of millions in tax debt.
Explaining that ‘my little boy desperately needed her approval,’ he added that ‘I felt threatened’ by Janet, saying he ‘needed Mommy to think I was great, and then once I realized that she didn’t, the – my dragon woke up.’
Hindsight: The movie star said that he became a jokester as a way of diverting his father’s attention so he would not ‘hurt my mother or anybody in the house’
He also admitted that ‘female disapproval’ became ‘the central greatest pain in my life’ because of his inability to ‘protect’ Carolyn from Willard.
When he was on the show he felt ‘safety also extends to money’ which in his mind prevented women from being unfaithful, as a recent girlfriend of his had been.
Janet, 64, played Aunt Viv on the first three seasons of the sitcom but left in 1993, setting off a public war of words with Will and the collapse of her career.
The way they were: Janet, 64, played Aunt Viv on the first three seasons of the sitcom but left in 1993, setting off a public war of words with Will and the collapse of her career
While filming season three Janet was pregnant with her son Elijah – and on the reunion special she alleged she was in a ‘very abusive marriage’ at the time.
At that point Janet was with her first husband James Whitten, whom she ultimately divorced in 1994, the year after she left The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air.
She said in a confessional that when she was working during her tough pregnancy: ‘I was no longer laughing, smiling, joking, because there were things that were going on that nobody knew about. The cast had no idea what was going on.’
Together again: Will and Janet had a one-on-one conversation in a movie theater setting, separate from the general cast reunion (pictured)
‘You know, during that time of her pregnancy I wasn’t sensitive. I wasn’t perceptive,’ Will admitted in his own confessional. ‘And you know, now that I’ve had three kids I’ve learned some things that I did not know at the time and I would do things very differently, but I can see where I made the set very difficult for Janet.’
Janet also denied the reports that she was fired, saying she left over a ‘really bad deal’ that limited the amount of work she could do on the sitcom while also hemming her into a non-compete arrangement.
‘So that meant my salary was cut. I had a new baby and a husband who was out of work. So I said no. I did not accept their offer. I was never fired,’ she insisted.
Janet told Will: ‘And I wasn’t unprofessional on the set. I just stopped talking to everybody because I didn’t know who to trust because I’d been banished, and they said it was you who banished me, because you were Will. You were a kid.’
Throwback: Janet is pictured in a publicity still from the show with (left to right, top to bottom) Joseph Marcell, James Avery, Alfonso Ribeiro, Tatyana Ali and Karyn Parsons
She explained: ‘I lost everything. Reputation, everything. Everything. And I understand you were able to move forward, but you know those words, calling a black woman “difficult” in Hollywood is the kiss of death.’
She went on: ‘It’s the kiss of death, and it’s hard enough being a dark-skinned black woman in this business. But I felt it was necessary for us to finally move forward – and I’m sorry that I have blasted you to pieces,’ she added with a laugh.
She touched his cheek and he placed a hand on her shoulder while he said: ‘I could not do a 30-year celebration of this show and not celebrate you – celebrate your contribution to the show, celebrate your contribution to my life.’
‘I didn’t come here to have animosity. I came here to resolve ’cause it’s time,’ she said in a confessional, calling her conversation with Will ‘healing.’
Repose: Joseph, James, Alfonso, Tyler Collins, Kadeem Hardison, Will, Quincy JOnes, Al B. Sure!, Tatyana, Janet and Karyn are pictured during a shoot day on the show in 1990
Will’s chat with Janet was taped in September after she posted to her Instagram fan page urging him to discuss their problems with her face to face.
‘So September comes after August it’s the 30th anniversary a Fresh Prince. And they want to start a war. Well here is my challenge – we can either keep this war going for another 30 years but I’m not going to, or you can sit down with me and talk to me and not about me Mr. Smith then let’s do it,’ wrote Janet.
‘Can you only sit and talk about your strange unsavory problems in front of the world?’ she said, apparently having a dig at Will’s recent Red Table Talk with his wife Jada Pinkett Smith about her affair with R&B singer August Alsina.
‘Accept my challenge or shut up! Either you’re telling the truth and the BLACK MEN of the cast are telling the truth or I’m telling the truth. And only YOU and I… and quite a few others, know the truth let’s do this do YOU have the courage? #seeyouinseptember,’ Janet concluded.
Dearly departed: The reunion included a tribute to James Avery who died of complications from an open heart surgery in 2013 at the age of just 68
Will apparently accepted her challenge as the pair sat down for the reunion taping this September 9, 30 years to the day since the show premiered.
Janet had publicly held Will responsible for her exit from the show, calling him an ‘egomaniac’ during a 2011 interview where she said a reunion was off the table.
‘There will never be a reunion…as I will never do anything with an a**hole like Will Smith,’ she declared to TMZ, adding that ‘This constant reunion thing will never ever happen in my lifetime unless there is an apology, which he doesn’t know the word.’
Five years later she said on YouTube that while on the show she approached Will to help her and their co-stars negotiate a wage hike ‘like they did on Friends.’
‘Well here is my challenge’: Will’s chat with Janet was taped in September after she posted to her Instagram fan page urging him to discuss their problems with her face to face
She claimed that Will rebuffed her efforts, alleging that he told her: ‘My deal is my deal and y’all’s deal is y’all’s deal.’
‘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,’ Will said on the radio in Atlanta the year she left the series.
‘She has basically gone from a quarter of a million dollars a year to nothing. She’s mad now but she’s been mad all along,’ he added.
‘She said once: “I’ve been in the business for 10 years and this snotty-nosed punk comes along and gets a show.” No matter what, to her I’m just the AntiChrist.’
‘Janet Hubert was never difficult on that set’: Four years ago Janet appeared on The Real and discussed the aftermath of her departure from The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air
Four years ago Janet appeared on The Real and discussed the aftermath of her departure from The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air.
‘Janet Hubert was never difficult on that set. Janet Hubert was so professional it wasn’t even funny. I think Will simply needed to win and I think sometimes when you get caught up in a lie – and those things never happened,’ Janet insisted.
‘She never left the set. I never left the set. We got along great. I think he was young and he was inexperienced and I think he simply had to win.’
Referring to Will’s then-manager James Lassiter she said: ‘I spoke to JL when my dad died and my brother died and I begged them, I said: “I have a family. I need you to tell the world that this stuff didn’t happen.” And I was waiting in my heart thinking: “Somebody will come to me one day and help me,” but they didn’t.’
‘A**hole’: Janet has in the past held Will responsible for her departure from the show, calling him an ‘egomaniac’ during a 2011 interview where she said a reunion was off the table