Michael B. Jordan Gets In On The Denzel Washington And Will Smith Debate, But Has A Different Take

The Denzel Washington-Will Smith debate took over the internet recently, with many users favoring Washington over Smith. The Internet so far has weighed in plenty, but now it looks like Hollywood could get into the debate. In fact, Michael B. Jordan offered a different take when it comes to these acting giants: In his eyes, there's room for both. 

Being considered one of Hollywood’s rising leading men, Michael B. Jordan has been making huge strides in his career to obtain that status. Yet, Jordan knows a foundation was laid for him to be where he is today. Oftentimes, he has named Denzel Washington and Will Smith as his mentors and sources of inspiration. While the A Journal for Jordan star cherished his interactions with The Tragedy of Macbeth star, he has always referred to the King Richard star as his childhood idol. Shortly after the Washington-Smith debate went viral, Jordan gave his opinion to THR about both men:

Denzel perfected ‘leading man.’ He was like, ‘I’m going to fucking dominate this one thing and master it’ — the specificity of that got him to the point where he is universal and can do anything. Will [Smith] took an enterprise approach, and that’s something I connect with. He says all the time that he doesn’t feel like he’s the most talented, but he works the hardest. It’s work ethic, big vision, marketability.

Having interacted with both actors, Michael B. Jordan offered a refreshing look at their careers and approaches to Hollywood. Not only did he focus on their acting skills, but also spoke of their contributions in terms of giving Black men the space to be leading men in Hollywood. The two actors currently have the careers the Without Remorse star is striving to achieve. For Jordan, Washington and Smith laid the blueprint for his Hollywood future.

Really, Jordan has done nothing but lavish praise on Denzel Washington and Will Smith over the years. While working on A Journal for Jordan, Michael B. Jordan watched Washington like a hawk and asked tons of questions in preparation for directing Creed III. Of course, Jordan’s first interaction with the two-time Oscar winner didn’t scream mentor-mentee, as he first met him as "a kid," in his words. But things evidently worked out as the two stars collaborated on the upcoming romantic movie.

Jordan’s relationship with Will Smith has been a little different. When Michael B. Jordan’s Hollywood career first took off, he went to Smith for advice on navigating fame. It was a huge moment for Jordan as he grew up idolizing the Oscar nominee’s career. So, the Creed III star could’ve leaned more toward Smith than Washington but chose to give both actors their flowers.

Michael B. Jordan is never above giving praise to those who came before him. While he has nothing but admiration for both stars, all three leading men will be competing for moviegoers’ attention this holiday season. Viewers can currently see Will Smith in King Richard in theaters and on HBO Max. Denzel Washington’s The Tragedy of Macbeth and Jordan’s A Journal for Jordan (also directed by Washington) will arrive in theaters on Dec. 25.

Adreon Patterson
News Writer

A boy from Greenwood, South Carolina. CinemaBlend Contributor. An animation enthusiast (anime, US and international films, television). Freelance writer, designer and artist. Lover of music (US and international).