Entertainment

Why Will Smith and Jada are the worst: Scientology kids school, bizarre parenting and a discarded lover

Just when you thought you’d heard the most annoying thing about Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith’s “relational perfection” — yeah, that’s what they call it now — they go and outdo themselves.

The defiantly out-there couple, who have been married for 23 years and have two children together — son Jaden, 23, and daughter Willow, 20 — have admitted that Pinkett Smith had an affair with R&B singer August Alsina during a “break” from their marriage; that she’s sexually attracted to women; and that they share an unorthodox parenting style (“We don’t do punishment,” Smith once bragged).

Hollywood’s most dubiously enduring duo has been less forthcoming about their now-shuttered, allegedly secret Scientology school. In 2017, when former Scientologist Leah Remini claimed that Pinkett Smith was a “long time” down-low member, the couple denied any affiliations with the controversial religion. “We’ve never been Scientologists, we’ve never been swingers,” Smith said at the time.

Now, however, Smith has revealed that he and his wife are indeed in an open marriage. 

R&B singer August Alsina, here with Jada Pinkett Smith in 2017, had an affair during a break from her marriage to Will Smith. A Hollywood actress close to the couple told The Post in 2020: “Jada [previously] said she was mentoring him . . . “You did not help him, you helped destroy him.”
Getty Images for BET

“We have given each other trust and freedom, with the belief that everybody has to find their own way. And marriage for us can’t be a prison,” Smith, 53, told GQ this week

‘It’s not like we haven’t heard the stories rumbling around. It’s just that we have never heard them confess or admit to anything.’

A Hollywood insider told The Post the new open-marriage revelations aren’t surprising

He even admitted that his wife’s “entanglement” with Alsina made it seem like she was the adulterous one, but “that was not, Smith delicately explained to me, in fact the case,” the GQ writer noted.

“Jada never believed in conventional marriage … Jada had family members that had an unconventional relationship. So she grew up in a way that was very different than how I grew up,” Smith said.  

And then Smith dropped what could be the most annoying celebrity slang since “conscious uncoupling” was made infamous by Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin: “There were significant endless discussions about, what is relational perfection? What is the perfect way to interact as a couple? And for the large part of our relationship, monogamy was what we chose, not thinking of monogamy as the only relational perfection.”

He added that he’s in the throes of his “f – – k it 50s” phase, teasing his forthcoming 432-page mega-memoir, “Will,” out Nov. 9. (His co-author, Mark Manson, wrote “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck.”) 

The Smith family, from left: Will, Jada, son, Jaden, son Trey (from a previous marriage), and daughter, Willow.
The Smith family, from left: Will, Jada, son, Jaden, son Trey (from a previous marriage), and daughter, Willow. “We don’t do punishment,” Smith once said of his kids. Meanwhile, a former guest lecturer at the Smith offspring’s school said: “It wasn’t a rigorous program. In the name of ‘creativity,’ they were just letting the kids do whatever they want.” 
WireImage

Smith also revealed his self-indulgent, arguably sexist fantasy about having “a harem of girlfriends, including Halle Berry and Misty Copeland, and his work with celebrity intimacy counselor Michaela Boehm, which allowed him to “realize that my thoughts were not sins and even acting on an impure thought didn’t make me a piece of s – – t.” 

A Hollywood insider told The Post that the new open-marriage revelations aren’t surprising: “It’s not like we haven’t heard the stories rumbling around. It’s just that we have never heard them confess or admit to anything.”

They added: “That’s how their relationship has been for so long that you just get used to the way it functions. Also, it is a lot of pressure when people are watching you and you feel like you want to maintain this façade of having this power-couple relationship. So, yes, I think that they want to maintain that façade.”

Representatives for the Smiths did not respond to The Post’s request for comment.

Another source close to the family told The Post that the couple was the happiest they’ve ever seen them at Pinkett Smith’s 50th birthday party on Sept. 17. 

“It was the best I’ve ever seen her — happiest I’ve ever seen her. All of her closest friends were there. It was old-school,” the source said of the roller-skating party. 

Will Smith's forthcoming memoir, "Will," is out Nov. 9.
Will Smith’s forthcoming memoir, “Will,” is out Nov. 9. It’s teased contents are already generating buzz.

“Will was smiling the whole night and happier than anything. Her and Will were blissful. I never saw them smiling so much. It was the happiest I’ve seen them in a long time. It was like, ‘Wow, that’s what 50 is.’ “


The couple’s relationship has long been the subject of speculation.

In 2009, Pinkett Smith said: “I’ve heard all the things — their marriage is not real, he’s gay, she’s gay, they swing . . . I’ll tell you what, it’s too hard to be in a pretend marriage.”

Recently, they became more open about sharing their unconventional views on Pinkett Smith’s popular “Red Table Talk” series, which she hosts alongside her mom, Adrienne Banfield-Norris, and daughter, Willow. 

Now in its fourth season, the show is billed as a multigenerational conversation that doesn’t shy away from controversial topics, with Pinkett Smith and her family often injecting their own deeply personal feelings on life, love and marriage.

Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith attend Paramount Pictures' premiere of "Gemini Man" on October 06, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA, USA.
Jada and Will cuddle for the cameras at the 2019 premiere of “Gemini Man” in Los Angeles, California.
Sipa USA via AP

In the blockbuster 2020 episode, “Jada and Will: Their First One-On-One Conversation,” the couple finally admitted to Pinkett Smith’s affair with Alsina, who joined the family on vacation in Hawaii in 2016, after initially denying the rumors.

Pinkett Smith said she didn’t consider it a “transgression” because the couple had been on a break. “I just wanted to feel good,” she said. “It had been so long since I felt good.”

The series has featured other no-holds-barred family talk.

In an episode titled “Is Polyamory for You?,” which aired earlier this year, Willow said she identified as polyamorous

“I think the main foundation is the freedom to be able to create a relationship style that works for you and not just stepping into monogamy because that’s what everyone around you says is the right thing to do,” she said.

Willow Smith and Jaden Smith attend the "Happier Than Ever: The Destination" celebration, presented by Billie Eilish and Spotify, for the new album on July 29, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.
Willow Smith and Jaden Smith attend the “Happier Than Ever: The Destination” celebration, presented by Billie Eilish and Spotify, for the new album on July 29, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.
Getty Images for Spotify

The Smiths are actually highly dedicated parents, according to another source who was close to the couple years ago when their children were smaller. (Willow first generated “polluted” controversy in 2014 when she was 13 — and posed in bed with a shirtless 20-year-old male friend, actor Moises Arias.)

“They were amazing with their kids. Their kids always came first,” the source said.

Both Willow and Jaden attended the Smiths’ short-lived school, widely believed to be a center of Scientology, called the New Village Leadership Academy, which opened in 2008 before quietly shuttering five years later.

Love ’em or hate ’em: How Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith became one of the most headline-grabbing couples of their time — and brought August Alsina, Willow Smith and Jaden Smith along for the wild ride.AP/Getty Images/ NY Post composite

“It wasn’t a rigorous program,” a former guest lecturer at the school told the Daily Beast. “In the name of ‘creativity,’ they were just letting the kids do whatever they want.” 

Around the time it closed, Jaden, who is gender fluid and a Louis Vuitton womenswear model, made waves when he tweeted: “School Is The Tool To Brainwash The Youth.” 

Despite ample criticism, Jada is proud of her unique parenting style. “I’m not a conventional, which I take a lot pride in,” she said in 2014. “I don’t just sit with Willow and go, ‘Hey, this is what Mommy thinks.’”


Smith and Pinkett Smith met on the set of “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” in 1994, when Jada auditioned to play Smith’s girlfriend but was passed over for the role due to her diminutive stature (she’s 5-feet tall and he’s 6-foot-2). 

Jada Pinkett and actor Will Smith attend the "Devil in a Blue Dress" Beverly Hills Premiere on September 22, 1995 at the Academy Theatre in Beverly Hills, California.
Jada Pinkett and actor Will Smith attend the premiere of Denzel Washington’s “Devil in a Blue Dress” on September 22, 1995 at the Academy Theatre in Beverly Hills, California.
Ron Galella Collection via Getty

At the time, Smith was married to businesswoman, actress and fashion designer Sheree Zampino, now 53. The two married in 1992, and that same year they had a son, 28-year-old actor Trey Smith, before splitting in 1995. 

“I knew [Jada] was the woman I was supposed to be with,” Smith said on “Red Table Talk,” recalling the epiphany he had while at dinner with Zampino.

He wed Pinkett Smith on New Year’s Eve 1997, which People called “the most lavish and secretive celebrity wedding of the year.” Jada glowed in a high-necked, champagne-colored, velvet Badgley Mischka gown. (She was three months pregnant with Jaden at the time.)

Still, she was nearly a runaway bride, and had zero interest in marriage at the time. “I was so upset that I had to have a wedding. I was so pissed. I went crying down the freakin’ aisle getting married,” she said on “Red Table Talk.”

That seemed to give way to a number of marital compromises, including when Smith persuaded Pinkett Smith to move into a 256-acre compound.

“Nothing good comes from spending your hard-earned money on a ‘family home’ that your wife doesn’t want,” Smith writes in his upcoming memoir, according to GQ. 

“You are putting a down payment on discord and for years you will be paying off a mortgage of misery. Or, worse.”

Another marital low point came when Pinkett Smith turned 40.

“That’s when I had a midlife crisis,” she said on “Red Table Talk.”

“Yeah, your 40th birthday was my low point,” Smith replied.

He had planned a birthday bash in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he screened a documentary he had commissioned recounting Pinkett Smith’s family history, including her lineage to slavery.

“She told me that the party was the most ridiculous display of my ego,” Smith said on the show.

The two began fighting so loudly that then 10-year-old Willow came out crying, with her hands held over her ears, imploring them to stop, according to GQ.

“Our marriage wasn’t working,” Smith writes in his book. “We could no longer pretend. We were both miserable and clearly something had to change.”


In 2013, Pinkett Smith led fans to believe that the couple shared an open marriage.

“I’ve always told Will, ‘You can do whatever you want as long as you can look at yourself in the mirror and be OK,’ ” she said on Huff Post Live

“Because at the end of the day, Will is his own man. I’m here as his partner, but he is his own man. He has to decide who he wants to be and that’s not for me to do for him. Or vice versa.”

Pinkett Smith later took to Facebook to clarify her comments: “Here is how I will change my statement … Will and I BOTH can do WHATEVER we want, because we TRUST each other to do so,” she wrote. “This does NOT mean we have an open relationship … this means we have a GROWN one.”

On a 2020 episode of “Red Table Talk,” the couple revealed they had quietly separated in 2016 when Pinkett Smith became involved with Alsina, now 29, who had gone through a series of health issues, including being diagnosed with liver disease in 2017.

But a Hollywood actress close to the couple claimed that Pinkett Smith took advantage of the situation, telling The Post in 2020: “Jada [previously] said she was mentoring him . . . what kind of mentoring was she giving him where he felt he gave his all to a relationship that has left him devastated and hurt?,” the source said.

“You did not help him, you helped destroy him.”

Pinkett Smith chalked it up to being “broken” at the time and looking for fulfillment in others — but then said she began “healing” her relationship with Smith.

“We did everything we could to get away from each other, only to realize that’s not possible,” she said in 2018.

Around that time, Smith told TIDAL’s Rap Radar podcast that the pair “don’t even say we’re married anymore.” Rather, they considered themselves “life partners.” 

“You get into that space where you realize you are literally with somebody for the rest of your life,” he said. “There’s no deal breakers. There’s nothing she could do — ever — nothing that would break our relationship. She has my support till death, and it feels so good to get to that space.”

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