Will Smith (left) and Ben Foster (right)
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Will Smith Says ‘Emancipation’ Costar Ben Foster Didn’t Speak to Him or Make Eye Contact While on Set for 6 Months

Will Smith said that his “Emancipation” costar Ben Foster purposely avoided interacting with him while on the set of the film.

“He didn’t speak to me, he didn’t make eye contact with me, he didn’t say a word, he didn’t acknowledge me for six months,” Smith recalled during his takeover of the latest episode of “Red Table Talk” on Facebook Watch, released on Wednesday.

Smith was joined by kids Trey Smith, Jaden Smith, and Willow Smith to talk about his role as Peter in “Emancipation,” which was made available on Apple TV+ on Friday.

Antoine Fuqua’s movie, which was inspired by the famous 1863 photos of “Whipped Peter,” centers on a man who escapes slavery. Foster stars as Fassell, a slave owner who hunts Smith’s character following his escape.

During his appearance on “RTT,” Smith described “Emancipation” as “one of the most grueling and transformative and ultimately rewarding films of my entire career.” He also said that Foster is the “total opposite of his character.”

In a video message, Foster said that he chose to give Smith “space” when he saw him transform into his character.

“We didn’t speak for six months of shooting,” Foster said, adding that Smith is an actor he respected for a long time.

Smith, in response, praised his costar for setting the tone from that first day on set, when Foster walked by him without saying a word.

“What he did that first day, I was like ‘Yup got it, we’re not playing. This is real. This is serious. We’re not fooling around with these ideas,'” Smith said. “And I really credit Ben with clicking me into the next gear of depth and focus.”

“Ben set the tone for everybody,” the Oscar-winning actor added. “He wasn’t going to his trailer. He was staying in his tent on the set all day long. He had all his stuff in his character’s tent.”

Smith also vividly recalled Foster shedding his character and finally introducing himself in a friendly manner once his filming wrapped. The “King Richard” star said that they didn’t talk until a few months later when they gathered to do press.

“I was like, ‘Who are you, you kind soul?'” Smith said of Foster.

The post Will Smith Says ‘Emancipation’ Costar Ben Foster Didn’t Speak to Him or Make Eye Contact While on Set for 6 Months was originally published on Insider.

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