It’s undeniable that Will Smith is one of the most endearing entertainers in the industry. Earlier today he was a guest on Ellen, and from the moment he stepped on stage he made sure to give the screaming audience an interactive performance. Smith walked out to his 1998 Big Willie Style hit “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It,” and instead of letting the song fade as he took his seat, he proceeded to rap the first verse before the audience chimed in for the “na na” chorus.
The star was visiting Ellen to promote his film Aladdin that hits theaters this Friday. There’s been some criticism over his portrayal of “Genie” as some diehard Disney fans can’t see anyone reprising a role that Robin Williams made popular. However, Smith made the role his own, drawing inspiration from both the late actor and hip hop.
“The music is where I found my ‘in’ to the Genie,” Smith explained. “‘A Friend Like Me’ was the first song that I messed with in the studio and then I found that hip hop flavor.” He added, “I was like, ‘Oh, I can just use my Fresh Prince persona and use that ’cause the Genie’s been forward and back in time, so he can pull references from anywhere. So I mirrored that. The hip hop ‘in’ was where I saw I could put my own signature while maintaining the nostalgic value.”
Showing he’s dedicated to promoting Aladdin by any means necessary, Smith even came out dressed in a genie’s lamp costume that was slightly…suggestive. Smith quipped that this part of the show would be edited out, but Ellen made it clear that it wouldn’t. The audience chuckled as Ellen kept looking at the costume. Then she said, “It’s been a while since I’ve seen a lamp so I don’t know what size it should be.” To wrap things up, Ellen wanted to help Smith get over his fear of mice, and that, of course, was yet another hilarious turn for his visit. Check it all out below.