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The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion Reveals Two Cast Members Turned The Gig Down – Essence

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion Reveals Two Cast Members Turned The Gig Down – Essence

One of our favorite families is reuniting just in time for Thanksgiving. On Friday, Will Smith gave fans a first look at The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunion special. 

He posted the trailer on his Instagram page with a touching caption. “These are the people who made me the man I am today,” he wrote. “And I couldn’t let this day go by without marking the occasion.” The special was taped on September 10, the 30th anniversary of the original series premiere date. 

The trailer features the cast coming together in the iconic living room where so many of the laughter and love was shared in the beloved original sitcom. During a portion of the special, the cast shared little known stories about the series. Smith revealed that Jazzy Jeff initially refused to participate in the show. 

“I had no aspirations to act,” said Jeff. 

“Jeff turned down the show literally ten times,” said Smith. “Will is very good at talking me into things,” added Jeff. 

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

Daphne Maxwell Reid shared that she wasn’t keen on the idea of joining the cast as the second Aunt Vivian either. “They said ‘We want you to audition for this new sitcom with a rapper.’ I said ‘Pass,’” she said, causing Smith to throw his head back in laughter. 

Series regulars Tatyana Ali (Ashley Banks), Karyn Parsons (Hilary Banks), Joseph Marcell (Geoffrey Butler), Daphne Maxwell Reid (who played the second Vivian Banks) and Alfonso Ribeiro (Carlton Banks) joined Smith on the set with DJ Jazzy Jeff

The special also featured a special moment between Smith and Janet Hubert, the original Aunt Vivian. “I couldn’t celebrate thirty years of Fresh Prince without Janet,” said Smith. 

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reunion special will debut Thursday, November 19, on HBO Max. 

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