“Fresh Prince” enters Fashion

Will Smith’s new clothing line is a well-timed, well-designed continuation of the Fresh Prince’s franchise.

Will Smith is in. Athleisure is in. The 90s are now. If there ever was a time to capitalize on the cultural treasure that graced television screens with new seasons from ’90-’96, it is now. The timeliness of this line’s release is a display of business acumen that any entrepreneur would praise, but I believe the market entry point isn’t even the aspect most deserving of our praise. What Will Smith has has done with this line is capitalized of the purest essence of his work.

When Will Smith began his acting career, he was quite literally drowning in a sea of debt when he was thrown a lifesaver by the great Quincy Jones. The fate of all too many creatives – of color, especially- is that due to some combination of poor legal advice, money management, and life circumstances coupled with predatory record labels and production companies, that our artists find themselves locked into contracts leaving them unable to capitalize on the fruits of their own labor. The beauty of Will Smith taking full artistic liberties with the Fresh Prince’s image is that this type of ownership is something historically denied to black Americans.

Will Smith has managed to capture yet another generation on his own terms. After a brief hiatus from the public eye to straighten out his personal matters, he has proven his status as a renaissance man and experienced a resurgence as a brand in himself. As such, he has become an archetypal example for creatives maneuvering in the interdisciplinary world:

  • Rap, with Smith recently breaking into the Latin Trap Reggaeton sub-genres
  • TV, a six season, seven-year run is nothing to scoff at
  • Film, Smith was/is the hottest thing in film
  • Social Media Influencer, 38.2 million followers says it all
  • Fashion, this line capturing the theme of Smith’s loud, eclectic Fresh Prince fits


About the Author

Daniel Johnson is from Laurinburg, NC. He's currently a junior here at UNCC with majors in Philosophy and Political Science. He enjoys internet surfing, sleeping, and listening to music. Music, visual art, and philosophy are interests of his, but he really enjoys writing poetry and listening to spoken word. His enjoyment of the arts drew him towards volunteering with Sanskrit and being a part in assembling the great conglomerate of work that caught his eye during his very first week on campus.