The iconic sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air will be getting a dramatic makeover for modern audiences. NBC’s streaming service Peacock unveiled the first trailer on Monday and announced viewers can start streaming it from February 13.
Bel-Air, like the classic Will Smith-led show, will follow Will, a street smart teenager from Philadelphia that is sent to live with his wealthy relatives in hopes for a better future.
In the lines of the original theme song, Will got into one little fight and his mum got scared. Bel-Air reimagines this in a more gritty subtext. The trailer depicts Will, played by Jabari Banks, firing gunshots in the air, being tackled by the police, and being wanted by a criminal in Philadelphia.
In 2019, writer and director Morgan Cooper went viral after his mock-up trailer titled Bel-Air. His trailer reevaluated Will’s coming-of-age story in dramatic light. The trailer racked up millions of views in a few days and caught the attention of Will Smith. This led to bringing Cooper’s vision to life with the remaking of the sitcom.
Will Smith played his part in this reboot as the executive producer and uploaded the trailer on his YouTube and Instagram pages. Both respectively garnered over a million views.
Smith wrote on YouTube: “3 years ago, my guy Morgan Cooper uploaded his fan trailer to YouTube, showing how he envisioned the Fresh Prince as a drama. Now, here is the first full look at his retelling of the story that’s always been so close to my heart.”
Fans can expect a change in iconic characters. The trailer shows that the cousin Carlton we know will be replaced with a much cooler version (played by Olly Sholotan). Adrian Holmes will play the late James Avery’s, uncle Phil. Cassandra Freeman will play Aunt Viv, Coco Jones and Akira Akbar will play Hillary and Ashley Banks.
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air has long been a favourite since its release in 1990. Will Bel-Air be able to live up to the legacy of the show with its more serious and stylistic changes?
Viewers can expect Bel-Air to arrive on Sky and Now TV next month.
Words by Asiyo Ali
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