The exhibit will also features a pre-recorded audio tour by Alfonso Ribeiro
WEST PHILADELPHIA — The who’s who of the Philadelphia upper class were out in droves last week at a star-studded gala for the grand opening of the newest exhibit at the state’s highly prestigious Will Smithsonian Institute.
The exhibit, now open after two years of preparation, exhaustively details Will Smith’s lifetime of work on television and the silver screen and features the original vinyl pressings of his first album Rock the House featuring DJ Jazzy Jeff as well as boasts an interactive replica of the living room set from The Fresh Prince of Bel Air complete with animatronic Uncle Phil.
Doug Higgins, chief curator of the exhibit, proudly cut the ribbon last night officially opening it to the public. After a night of guiding crowds through halls lined with movie paraphernalia, Higgins sat down with The Peak to discuss the Institute’s crowning achievement
“An award-winning rap artist, actor, and philanthropist, Mr. Smith is the modern Renaissance man. At the Will Smithsonian, we seek only to preserve his legacy so that future generations might enjoy it. In his many roles Mr. Smith shows us the limitless potential within each of us, showing us that we can accomplish anything, whether it’s defeating a robot uprising, defeating an alien invasion, or finding a woman who is sexually attracted to Kevin James.”
“As the saying goes, ‘where’s there’s a Will, there’s a way.’ ” These words are also inscribed upon base plate in the museum’s centre atrium. On top of the plate stands a 25-foot tall limestone statue of Smith to greet museum patrons.
Recently, the exhibit has drawn comparisons to the Guggenheim’s now year-old installation “Williard,” which also documents the career of the 44-year-old actor and rap artist.
“I suppose our exhibit is comparable to theirs, in the same way a flea-market VHS rip of Bad Boys II is comparable to the original unedited negatives. Which, incidentally, are on display in gallery 2B.”
Pausing to clean his glasses, Higgins continued. “My point is that in their hubris to beat us to launch, the Guggenheim let some truly egregious errors slip past what they call a historical accuracy society. For example, and this one always makes me laugh, smack dab in the middle of their hall of wax crew members, they have a wax Michael C. Casper, who was the additional sound rerecording mixer hired on for Independence Day. But he’s credited as Michael Chandler, the movie’s sound editor.
“The Will Smithsonian exhibit is free of such inaccuracies, which I have personally ensured. It has been my life’s work ever since I was an archivist working in the basement, carefully cataloguing the 270 suits worn by Smith in Men in Black by order of chronological appearance in film. ”
When The Peak approached Will Smith for a statement regarding the exhibition, his agent told the institute that Mr. Smith found exhibition to be “a’ight.” Higgins remains unresponsive in the ICU Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital, the first medically recorded case of a person rendered comatose from “happyness.”