Jada Pinkett Smith On Her “Excruciating” Choices

Mom-of-two Jada Pinkett Smith graces REDBOOK‘s August cover and gets honest and emotional about motherhood, her “excruciating” career choices, and raising her superstar kids Jaden, 12, and Willow, 10, with movie star hubby Will Smith.

On raising her kids in Hollywood: “Let me tell you what I fear most: Them growing up like I did, in a house with drugs in a war zone, where if I walked out my door I could be shot. Hollywood ain’t nothing compared to that! Growing up in the streets of Baltimore, or the streets of Philly where Will grew up — I’d rather have my kids here. It still makes me nervous that they’re part of something that isn’t totally real, but it’s up to Will and me to teach them what’s real and what’s not.”

On putting family first: “I had to make choices. Believe me, I would still be on the road with my band, Wicked Wisdom, and making as many movies as I can a year, and doing all sorts of other things if I didn’t have the responsibility of a family. But I have children with their own talents and dreams, and I know I have to be standing next to them for that journey.”

On giving up on her rockstar dreams: “It was excruciating, completely excruciating. When Jaden was auditioning for The Pursuit of Happyness, my band had just gotten an offer to open for Guns N’ Roses in Europe. For me, that was unbelievable. But the choice was: I could be a rock star, or I could be on the set with my son to make sure he was healthy and happy. We all know how that story ended!”

Continue reading the interview with Jada at REDBOOK

Filed under: Jada Pinkett-Smith

Photo credit: Matt Jones for REDBOOK

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17 Comments on "Jada Pinkett Smith On Her “Excruciating” Choices"

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Anonymous
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Nothing against Jada, but “excruciating” choices – lay off the hyperbole, will ya? GMAB!!

Anonymous
Guest

She looks fantastic as usual. Love this woman.

whatever
Guest

@Alyssia I myself just can’t come to beleive that you are Latino to sterotype just those nationalities is just mind blowing. For one every race has its non productive lowlifes but thats life deal with it. And if you are latino which I just do’nt beleive then go on with your miserable life and pretend your something your not if you are indeed Latino than you my friend are in fact a disgrace to your race

Alyssia
Guest

Another stellar use of the English language. I was born in Mexico city dear. The disgrace to my race are those Latinos who abuse the system and use the excuse that it’s poverty. Pathetic! Many more believe my side over your bleeding heart.Seems to me you have the bitter life chicka.

Latinaandproud!
Guest

Completely agree with you ALYSSIA.

(de acuerdo con usted)

Anonymous
Guest

poor Jada, she has to be a mom. Boo- freaking who.

Anonymous
Guest

Goes to show, money does not make choices easier. As parents we all make sacrifices, no matter what the status. Good to hear a real prospective from someone who is in the spotlight.

Anonymous56
Guest
There are good parts of MD and PA just like if you go to Hollywood which I’ve been and there are bad parts, down the street from Rodeo Drive they drugs dealers, prostitutes on the corner after dark Roman Chinese Theater turns into prostitutes central and let me tell you the freak do come out at night. It’s not as glamorous as it is seen in movie and TV shows, now were the rich live in the Hollywood mounts I’m sure it’s very glamorous but not ever part. She could come up with a better reason than the whole song… Read more »
Tara
Guest

So true I grew up in suburban Philly, what is known as the main line. Will did not grow up in the war zone of Philadelphia. Most of Philadelphia is safe, as you said every city has it’s plus and minuses. He was from wynnewood, part of the main line- middle class families, and went to a private school. I hate the way she tries to make it sound like they had tumultuous childhoods. She seems very disingenuous in every interview.

Anonymous
Guest
The reason cities like Philadelphia and Baltimore have lost their glory is due to the fact a “certain” element has infested the cities. They have no respect for others and their parenting style is non existent. They prefer to live in squalor and choose welfare and drugs are their favored lifestyle. Flash mobs and violence is all they know and I for one am disgusted by the excuses given to them time and time again. Stop behaving like animals and become productive members of society. The color of your skin is not a free pass for acting human.
Victoria
Guest

^^^UHHH NO!

Alyssia
Guest
To begin with your attempt at a rebuttal makes absolutely no sense. I agree with her/him. The main reason these large cities fail is because certain ethnic groups and races move into an area and cause the other nationalities to flee. Then instead of maki it a prosperous area they make it a pigpen. They do not do anything productive to make the area inhabitable and then expect government programs to bail them out. I was born in Mexico and I see my fellow nationals as well as African Americans and Laotians destroy the fiber of a community. There is… Read more »
Anonymous
Guest

Yes, Will hardly grew up in anything close to a ghetto. Get real Jada.

Anonymous
Guest

she’s right about one thing- it’s up to her and Will to teach their kids what’s ‘real’ and what’s not- I wouldn’t necessarily chose to raise my kids in Hollywood, but it doesn’t mean they are automatically doomed- with good parents they should be alright.

Anonymous 2
Guest

I don’t understand why having his father on the set wasn’t enough. I respect her decision, but the reasoning doesn’t quite make sense to me. If Will were busy on another role I could see, but he starred in the same film she’s referring to. I don’t get it.

Anonymous
Guest

Because a son needs both parents there, of course.

Also, if dad is working to memorize lines, etc. who is going to give Jaden the nurturing, and attention he needs? Dad can’t do everything, and mom steps in.

Anonymous
Guest

I’m guessing because Will would have been working 24/7, doing his scenes- he obviously can’t be there for his son while he’s doing whatever he needs to do- and Jayden was still little, liek 6 I think, he needed his mom.

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