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Will Smith talks about the ‘monster’ of fame and what’s next for him in Hollywood

By Marianne Garvey, CNN

(CNN) — Will Smith is reflecting on the dangers of fame.

Smith spoke at the Red Sea International Film Festival in Saudi Arabia on Saturday, where he described fame as “a unique monster” that he’s tried to be “careful” around.

He continued: “You can’t get excited when everybody is saying good things about you, because the more you take when people are saying good things about you, the more hurt you’re gonna be when people are saying bad things about you.”

Smith added that his mission going forward is to be “clear about who I am and what I am attempting to do in the world.”

“I can’t need others to applaud for me to stay focused on my mission. I have always wanted to put good into the world,” he said. “I have always wanted to make people smile. I have always been devoted to the process of joy and inspiration.”

The Oscar winner said that he has been “humbled” after he slapped comedian Chris Rock on stage at the 2022 Academy Awards, adding he now feels “deeply inspired to perfect my light.”

“And that’s what this next phase of my life is going to be, perfecting and shining my light as brightly as I can, on as many people as I can,” he said.

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