The 10 Strangest Quotes From Will and Jaden Smith’s ‘New York’ Interview

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Hollywood royals Will and Jaden Smith are in a whirlwind of promotion for their sci-fi film After Earth, written by the elder Smith and directed by M. Night Shyamalan. The eccentric father-son duo graces the cover of this week’s New York magazine for a bizarre discussion about their relationship, their approach to fame, and scientific theories that revolve around a nondescript theme of “patterns.” Author Claire Hoffman steers the interview in a questionable direction from the start and is quick to ask the two about their religion, probably in hopes that they’ll talk about Scientology. Neither indulges her in specifics — about religion or anything else, really — and the article quickly becomes a collection of vague intellectual soundbites and deadly serious descriptions of the Smith family’s many projects. Will describes himself as a “student” of several subjects and mocks Hoffman for attempting to compare the Smiths to the Kardashians, insisting that “[fame] is almost an inconsequential by-product of what we’re really trying to accomplish. We are trying to put great things into the world.” Whatever your thoughts on the Smiths, it’s easily one of the strangest Q&As of the year so far. Check out some of our favorite quotes below and read the rest of the interview at Vulture.

1. “I’m a student of patterns. At heart, I’m a physicist. I look at everything in my life as trying to find the single equation, the theory of everything.” — Will

2. “When you find things that are tried and true for millennia, you can bet that it’s going to happen tomorrow.” — Will

3. On seeing patterns: “I think that there is that special equation for everything, but I don’t think our mathematics have evolved enough for us to even — I think there’s, like, a whole new mathematics that we’d have to learn to get that equation.” — Jaden

4. “[We] are students of world religion… We respect all [religions].” — Will

5. “[Willow] has a magic power in the family. She absolutely demands the most attention, and there’s ­something really incendiary about a 12-year-old girl who says and does what she wants.” — Will

6. On the pair’s chances of making another movie together: “If you were a student of the pattern, you’d have to say we’re going to do another one.” — Will

7. “You know, the forum of media that we’re in can’t really handle the complexity of things that we say all the time… I did an interview where the only quote that everybody ran was ‘Will Smith doesn’t believe in punishment.’ Well, that’s actually ridiculous. That’s not what I said, but the sound bite can’t actually hold the complexity of what I’m trying to say, you know.” — Will

8. On his alphabetized laser disc collection: “Yeah, I’m very, very serious about systems supporting creative inspiration.” — Will

9. On the dynamic between him and his father: “It’s hard for me to explain because it’s so normal to me. It’s like ­asking, ‘So, Jaden, how do you breathe?’ He’s, like, really just cool.” — Jaden

10. “If I’m with my friends, and they’ll be like, ‘Oh, hey, where’s your dad? Let’s go say hi.’ And I’ll be like, ‘Oh, no. He’s watching hours and hours of TED Talks just … Dude, don’t go in there.’ Last time I went in there, he said, ‘Jaden, so the art of telling stories is an art that you really have to learn. I want you to read Aesop’s Fables.’ ‘Dad, I’ve read Aesop’s Fables three times.’ ‘Honestly, you can’t read it enough.’ But when you’re on your way to see a 9:15 movie and it’s nine o’clock, he’s like, ‘Wait, wait, Jaden, I need to tell you something about life, man.'” — Jaden