Did Will Smith Lose Weight for Emancipation? How Much?

Apple TV+’s historical film ‘Emancipation’ revolves around the true story of Peter, a slave who puts his life on the line to earn his freedom. When Peter comes to know about the abolition of slavery, he runs away from a Confederate slave camp to join the Union Army camp in Baton Rouge. The film progresses through Peter’s efforts to end up in the military camp while slave hunter Jim Fassel tries to capture him. Will Smith, after playing Richard Williams in ‘King Richard,’ portrays Peter in the Antoine Fuqua directorial. Since the actor appears with a distinctive physique in the film, the viewers must be eager to know whether Smith has reduced his weight for the role. Well, let us share the answer!

Did Will Smith Reduce Weight for Emancipation? How Much?

Yes, Will Smith did lose weight for playing Peter in ‘Emancipation.’ Before joining the production of Antoine Fuqua’s film, Smith had gained weight to play Richard Williams in ‘King Richard.’ When the Covid-19 pandemic happened, Smith’s weight further increased. “The character [Richard Williams] required that I put weight on, so I put on weight, you know, the thicky-woo-woo. And then Covid-19 hit. Covid made the weight more than the role called for,” Smith said about the same. In May 2021, Smith weighed 221 pounds and he was determined to lose weight.

“I’m not feeling great, mentally or physically, so this is a clean slate. I embrace adversity as opportunity, and I know it’s within my power to take anything and make it the best thing that ever happened,” Smith added. In May 2021, Smith set out to reduce twenty pounds within twenty weeks. The actor not only got into a strict regimen to reduce his weight but also filmed his weight loss journey and eventually released it as a series titled ‘Best Shape of My Life.’ Along with the help of his trainer Aaron Ferguson, the actor started to transform his physique.

The filming of ‘Emancipation’ reportedly began in July 2021, while Smith was continuing his weight-loss regimen. Thus, his decision to reduce twenty pounds significantly enhanced his portrayal of Peter in the film. With his new physique, Smith succeeds in portraying the exhaustion his character has been suffering as a slave in a Confederate state. In addition to his weight loss, Smith also had to lift several chains which are integral props of his character.

Will Smith has always been dedicated to offering the best portrayals of the characters he commits to portray. Before gaining weight for playing Richard Williams in ‘King Richard,’ Smith had increased his weight to play Muhammad Ali in Michael Mann’s biographical film ‘Ali.’ Furthermore, Antoine Fuqua is a filmmaker who expects the best from his performers. Jake Gyllenhaal had gained weight to play Billy “The Great” Hope in Fuqua’s ‘Southpaw.’ Since gaining and losing weight are integral aspects of acting in today’s times, it is no wonder that Smith had shown resilience to transform his physique. The actor’s dedication is visible in Peter’s weariness, which is an essential part of the character.

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