Pharrell Williams threw on his journalist cap, interviewing Jaden and Willow Smith about everything from philosophy to fashion. The two siblings were shot by Steven Klein. They appear in designer threads from Burberry, Rick Owens, Alexander Wang, and Chanel Haute Couture.
WILLOW ON OLDER PEOPLE: “It seems like they don’t understand our thought process. Or, like, things have happened in the past that they’re still mad about. We want to accept them and move forward. I mean, I can definitely see things that have happened in the past that they’re holding on to and things that are happening right now that bog them down, but this generation wants to transcend them.”
JADEN ON HAPPINESS: “It’s good to be happy and tell us how cool your life is and how awesome you are on social media. That’s great because it inspires other people to be happy, too. But a lot of times, people are trying to be happy in the wrong ways—with money or with different things that are not true happiness. It’s leading people down a rabbit hole that actually doesn’t exist.”
WILLOW ON INSTAGRAM FAME: “I know so many kids who literally are, like, Instagram-famous. They have done nothing but post pictures on Instagram. And they have followings. People love to see them in person, but it’s only because they post on their Instagram. It’s literally crazy. Kids will paint a picture of themselves that is so far beyond who they actually are. It’s like they’re wearing someone else’s skin.”
WILLOW ON WILL AND JADA: “Growing up, all I saw was my parents trying to be the best people they could be, and people coming to them for wisdom, coming to them for guidance, and them not putting themselves on a pedestal, but literally being face-to-face with these people and saying, ‘I’m no better than you, but the fact that you’re coming to me to reach some sort of enlightenment or to shine a light on something, that makes me feel love and gratitude for you.’ They always give back what people give to them…It’s not just about money. It’s not just about giving people gifts or whatever. What my parents have given to me is not anything that has to do with money or success or anything that society says people should be focusing on—it’s something spiritual that only certain people can grasp and accept. And that’s how I act and move in the world today.”
JADEN ON WILL AND JADA: “My parents are definitely my biggest role models. And that’s where me and Willow both pull all of our inspiration from to change the world. It all comes from a concept of affecting the world in a positive way and leaving it better than it was than when we came. I feel like that enters into all types of different areas because there are so many different outlets that life has to offer for us. That goes into technology, into music. That goes into science, into spirituality, into education.”
JADEN ON PHILOSOPHICAL QUESTIONS: “A question I would like to present to the world is: Where is the love? And what are we doing? Who’s making the decisions that are putting us in the predicaments that we are in, with all of these people losing their lives around the world in so many different ways? I feel like a serious revolution needs to take place in order for human beings to evolve in a way where we can truly exist as a society. Because, right now, we do not act as a true society. We act as a world under terror, just scrambling to survive.”
WILLOW ON PHILOSOPHICAL QUESTIONS: “How are humans going to start taking responsibility for the actions that they take? When are we going to stop pointing the finger at someone else for something we do unconsciously? How are we going to start being aware of those things and changing those things?”