«This is the maxi-story of how my life changed, turned upside down, turned upside down…». We all know the acronym: it is that of Willy, the Prince of Bel-Air, the cult sitcom of the nineties that launched Will Smith’s career and that is preparing to return, twenty-six years later, with a remake that starts from the same premise and declines it in a new guise. Bel-Air, coming to Peacock in 2022, will, in fact, be a dramatic version of Willy, the Prince of Bel-Air, and will try to shuffle the cards to give life to an unprecedented experiment with an absolutely uncertain outcome.
To reveal something more about the project is Peacock herself, who has published the initial theme of the new one on the Net Bel-Air, with the same stanzas read by Will Smith, but a completely different setting, with the protagonist, the newcomer Jabari Banks, floating in a pool until he sits on a throne and puts a golden crown on his head. The series, which sees Smith as an executive producer, will start from the same premises as the original series, namely the complicated journey that will take Will from the streets of West Philadelphia to the glittering mansions of Bel-Air. This time, however, we will go deeper into community conflicts and prejudices, with a greater focus on the social context and integration.
Along with Banks, we will also see Adrian Holmes in the role of Phillip Banks, the patriarch of the family who will save Will from a violent and dangerous life; Cassandra Freeman as his wife Vivian; Olly Sholotan, Coco Jones and Akira Akbar as Carlton, Hilary and Ashley, Phil and Viv’s children and Will’s cousins; Jimmy Akingbola in that of butler Geoffrey; and Jordan L. Jones and Simone Joy Jones as Jazz and Lisa, Will’s best friend and love interest. “Bel-Air is a coming-of-age story that celebrates the strength and love of a black family “, showrunners TJ Brady and Rasheed Newson said in a statement. “We have stayed true to the original premise. However, our new series takes Will and the Banks family into the world as we know it today. “