Will Smith gets first role after the blow: he produces Paramount’s ‘Brilliance’


Updated, September 20 at 6:55 PM ET: Paramount confirmed the following news via email to IndieWire.

Previously published: Will Smith will produce an adaptation of the novel ‘Brilliance’, with two-time Oscar winner Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy making her directorial debut.

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Four-time Emmy winner Obaid-Chinoy recently released episodes 4 and 5 of the Disney+ series “Ms. Wonder.” Produced by Paramount Pictures, the adaptation of Marcus Sakey’s novel has been dubbed a “passion project” for Oscar winner Smith and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman, who collaborated on “I, Robot,” “I Am Legend” and “Hancock.”

The book centers on Nick Cooper, a federal agent who works for the Department of Analysis and Response and is tasked with tracking down the 1 percent of non-neurotypical people considered “abnormal” or “brilliant” who have special powers. are born. The character Nick is a parent of a Brilliant daughter and is an abnormal himself, in a “Blade Runner”-esque twist. He has the ability to see the future and eventually tries to stop a civil war.

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Smith is producing the film through his company Westbrook Studios with Jon Mone and Ryan Shimazaki. Screenwriter Goldsman and Greg Lessans produce through Weed Road Pictures, along with Shane Salerno through The Story Factory and James Lassiter. Author Marcus Sackey, who wrote the novel “Brilliance”, is also a co-producer. Sackey also wrote follow-up novels “A Better World” and “Written in Fire,” opening the door to a possible movie trilogy.

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Director Obaid-Chinoy previously worked on the Academy Award-winning short documentaries “Saving Face” and “A Girl in the River.”

Smith’s post-Oscars career has been put on hold after the Academy’s Best Actor winner was banned for attacking presenter Chris Rock onstage. Smith apologized. His AppleTV+ movie “Emancipation,” directed by Antoine Fuqua and once a contender for awards, is set to release in December. No release date has been confirmed.

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“Over the past few months, I’ve done a lot of thinking and personal work,” the “King Richard” star said in onscreen text during an apology video in July 2022. Smith said he was “fogged” at the Oscars after attacking Rock. .

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