Sometimes the most brilliant ideas come out of nowhere.
While driving in his hometown of Kansas City one day, Morgan Cooper began randomly thinking about The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, a show he frequently watched as a child. The writer/director was then struck with an interesting question: What if he took the beloved '90s sitcom and reimagined it as a contemporary, gritty film?
It wasn't long before the world got a glimpse at what he came up with.
In early March, Cooper released a trailer for a fake film dubbed Bel-Air. The nearly nine-minute video adheres to the Fresh Prince's original storyline, but shelves the comedy factor for dramatic acting and serious plot points. The trailer has since garnered countless headlines and more than 3 million YouTube views. It also caught the attention of Fresh Prince's star. Will Smith, who recently spoke to Cooper about the trailer and how it reflected the real-life events that inspired the original sitcom.
"For me, I moved to LA and started the Fresh Prince, and all of my friends started getting killed and going to jail," Smith told Cooper. "The escape that I made from it in real life, was the escape that Will made in the show. Was I gonna be that same statistic? Or was gonna do, and be, something different?"
Will went on to speak about the power of online platforms that allow creatives like Cooper to share their ideas with the world.
"What's exciting to me is the new media of it all, that you put something on YouTube, right? You, like, just made a trailer, created something," he explained. "I'm excited and inspired about that new way that human beings are interacting and ideas are getting created. Even to create a pitch video is in keeping with the flavor of how the idea [of Fresh Prince] came to me."
Check out the full video with Smith and Cooper above.