Newcomer Jabari Banks has landed the lead role in Peacock’s upcoming drama reimagining of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The news was announced today by Peacock after Smith notified Banks of his casting.
The series, titled Bel-Air, is out of Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith’s Westbrook Studios and Universal Television. It is based on the viral concept trailer from Morgan Cooper released in 2019. Peacock won a buzzy bidding war for the series after Smith contacted Cooper and wanted to develop the project. The NBCUniversal streamer already has a two-season order for the series.
The official description:
Set in modern-day America, Bel-Air is a serialized one-hour dramatic analogue of the 90’s sitcom “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” that leans into the original premise: Will’s complicated journey from the streets of West Philadelphia to the gated mansions of Bel-Air. With a reimagined vision, Bel-Air will dive deeper into the inherent conflicts, emotions and biases that were impossible to fully explore in a 30-minute sitcom format, while still delivering swagger and nods to the original show.
Banks lives in West Philly and graduated from University of the Arts in Philly in 2020.
The co-showrunners are T.J. Brady and Rasheed Newson. Cooper is directing and is the co-writer and executive producer.
Exec producers are Will Smith, Terence Carter, James Lassiter, Miguel Melendez, Malcolm Spellman, Quincy Jones, Benny Medina, and Andy & Susan Borowitz.
The series is filming in Los Angeles, CA and Philadelphia, PA. It is produced by Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group, and Westbrook Studios, a division of Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith’s media company Westbrook Inc.
Watch Smith notify Banks of his casting below: