Before we get into this, it’s worth remembering that Jaden Smith is not a normal person. His dad, Will Smith, is reportedly worth $240m and there’s probably some tribe living deep in a rainforest somewhere that hasn’t seen The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air, but you can bet they went nuts for Independence Day. His actor mum, Jada Pinkett-Smith, is reportedly worth $20m and in 2011 his equally not-normal sister Willow released a song (‘Whip My Hair’) that went platinum when she was still a child.
So 17-year-old Jaden Smith is not a normal person. He couldn’t be. Asking Jaden to be normal, when he grew up unfathomably rich and famous and all his family friends are household names, is like asking you to name a decent film he’s been in – simply impossible.
And yet. There is equally no need for him to quite as weird as he is. Have you heard the shit he comes out with? It’s unbelievable. He bangs on about constructing a specifically 12.5-foot-tall pyramid in his parents’ back garden and unselfconsciously compares himself to Galileo. And that’s just in one GQ interview.
Anyway, it looks like his weirdness could soon be enshrined in the literary canon, as US Weekly reports that the young actor “sees himself as a modern-day prophet” and plans to release a book of essays offering “new takes on string theory and chaos theory, but more mystical”. To imagine how this tome might look, let’s examine some timeless quotes from his Twitter account and various baffling interviews. Behold – the philosophical musings of Jaden Smith: rapper, actor, potential future cult leader.
JADEN ON DEATH
There is logic here. What’s cooler and more aloof than just not bothering to breathe any longer?
JADEN ON RELATIVITY
Speaking to ID, Willow once paid tribute to her elder brother’s sagacity: “The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given was when my brother Jaden said, ‘Albert Einstein said that time was relative, but he forgot to say that so is everything else.’ And that just made me think: good and bad is so relative. Moral and immoral is so relative. Everything in the world is just so relative.”
JADEN ON GALILEO
In that chat with GQ, Jaden was talking about seeming weird and concluded: “They thought Galileo was crazy, too, you know what I’m saying? I don’t think I’m as revolutionary as Galileo, but I don’t think I’m not as revolutionary as Galileo.” Similarly, I don’t think Jaden Smith is a deluded spoilt child, but I don’t think he’s not a deluded spoilt child.
JADEN ON OWEN WILSON
A masterpiece. In 1740 Samuel Richardson popularised the novel with his controversial tale Pamela; or, Virtue Rewarded, in 1960 Harper Lee fearlessly tackled race relations with To Kill A Mockingbird and on April 30 2015 Jaden Smith forged this haunting image of him looking deep into the soul of the guy from Wedding Crashers. And that’s the history of literature, pretty much.
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JADEN ON GOALS
“I rarely go to parties,” he said in that GQ piece. “My whole life is just dedicated on learning and breaking, like, the craziest records of life, and being like one of the craziest human beings to ever exist. That’s me.”
JADEN ON LIVING (OR TALKING?)
From an interview with the New York Times’ T Magazine: “There’s a theoretical physicist inside all of our minds, and you can talk and talk, but [the point of life is] living.” And Jaden should know – the kid does enough talking.
JADEN ON PEEING
For most of us, crying when you pee is a call for antibiotics. But most of us are not Jaden Smith.
JADEN ON TIME
Another goodie from T Magazine: “It’s proven that how time moves for you depends on where you are in the universe. It’s relative to beings and other places. But on the level of being here on earth, if you are aware in a moment, one second can last a year. And if you are unaware, your whole childhood, your whole life can pass by in six seconds. But it’s also such a thing that you can get lost in.”
JADEN ON SCHOOL
The T Magazine interview keeps on giving: “Here’s the deal: School is not authentic because it ends. It’s not true, it’s not real. Our learning will never end. The school that we go to every single morning, we will continue to go to.” Our school is Jaden Smith’s Twitter feed, and he is the chairman of the board, head teacher, prefect and dinner lady.
JADEN ON SLEEP
He promised his followers he was about to tweet the “Most Jaden Thing Ever”, then followed up with this #truthbomb.
Let’s leave it there, shall we?