Row Over Real-life 'Villain' Of The Pursuit Of Happyness

The woman who inspired THANDIE NEWTON's character in WILL SMITH's new movie THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS is furious she has been portrayed as a sex-obsessed and cruel mother in the film. The film is about CHRIS GARDNER's - played by Smith - struggle to raise his son on the streets of San Francisco, after they were abandoned by his partner, before he turns his life around to become a multi-millionaire stockbroker. Gardner's former partner JACKIE MEDINA insists the film - adapted by Gardner's book - is fictional and she fears people will believe the her onscreen portrayal. She says, "This is a film. It has nothing to do with reality. It is not a documentary. It does not document life. Of course they got it wrong. It's an awful movie. I am a consulting a lawyer to see what I can do. "This is not fair at all. I've been to see the film and I hated it. This story is not about me. My big worry is that as Will Smith is so popular in America and this film is such a big hit, everyone will be against me. What chance do I really have? "This film was a real low point for Will Smith in my opinion. I thought much better of him. Now...everyone is talking about this. But what can I do?"


Contactmusic

Tags: Thandie Newton - Will Smith


Advertisement

Editors Recommendations

New 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Teaser Trailer Hits The Web. It's Insane. [Trailer]

While Mad Max has never been a docile franchise, we were still...

New 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Teaser Trailer Hits The Web. It's Insane. [Trailer]

Drunken Keith Urban fans hospitalised at concert

Chaos ensued at country star Keith Urban’s concert in Mansfield, Massachussetts as many fans...

Drunken Keith Urban fans hospitalised at concert

Jake Bugg - There's A Beast And We All Feed It

A new black and white video for Jake Bugg's song 'There's A Beast And We All Feed It' has now...

Jake Bugg - There's A Beast And We All Feed It Video

Ian Somerhalder And Nikki Reed Get Affectionate At Comic-Con 2014

Apparently Comic-Con is one giant love fest this year, with Ian Somerhalder...

Ian Somerhalder And Nikki Reed Get Affectionate At Comic-Con 2014

Poll: What Do We Think of The Simpsons/Family Guy Teaser Trailer?

Homer and Peter Griffin, Bart and Stewie, Marge and Lois, Lisa and Meg...

Poll: What Do We Think of The Simpsons/Family Guy Teaser Trailer?

The Kooks - Forgive & Forget (Live At Hana Studios)

The Kooks are set to return with their fourth studio album 'Listen' on September 1st 2014 via Virgin...

The Kooks - Forgive & Forget (Live At Hana Studios) Video
Advertisement

Marvel's "Avengers: Age Of Ultron" Trailer Debuted At SDCC And Looked Awesome, Probably.

Marvel kicked off promotion for Avengers: Age of Ultron early at SDCC...

Marvel's

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 'Our Leader The Mockingjay'

Katniss Everdeen has survived the latest political disaster of Panem...

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 Trailer

Lily Allen's Instagram Prank Might Get Aussie Policeman In Trouble

Lily Allen’s Instagram prank with the help of an Australian police officer could...

Lily Allen's Instagram Prank Might Get Aussie Policeman In Trouble


More recommendations

Advertisement

Comments

stormy's picture

stormy

I saw the Oprah episode with Chris, son & Will, however, I don't recall the mother having been metioned at all. The film really did concentrate on the relationship between the father & son, however, it would be interesting to know if the mother did try, later, to either regain custody or see her son on a regular basis while growing up. If she did do so, then, at least the son would have had a relationship with both parents, even if they weren't together. You could see in the film that she was hardworking and at her wits end following her husband's "illusive dream" trying to sell those machines rather than getting a normal job with a weekly pay cheque. She was the practical one worrying about all the bills (typical) but if he hadn't taken a shot, there wouldn't have been his success story, nor a movie! Also, a lot of people don't repay money they owe, regardless of colour. I don't think it was a slam on any particular race, it's just some peoples nature not to pay back money they owe.
Import Source: 
comments.nsf
Import Date: 
1322485386

7 years 5 months ago
Report
View Comments

LeChatNoir's picture

LeChatNoir

This movie should have been called The Pursuit of Money instead of Happiness.I agree that the way Chris Gardner's wife was portrayed in the movie lent unjustified bias towards the main character. His wife was extremely hardworking for example, during the first part of the movie before they break up as a couple, Chris' (Will Smith)wife (Thandie Newton), pleads with him to find the necessary rent money as she has been working DOUBLE SHIFTS FOR THE PAST 4 MONTHS. She then details how difficult it is for her to come off one shift, collect Christopher from the ramshackle Daycare Centre, give him a hot meal, bath him, then return to do a second shift at work. What woman in their right mind is going to put up with a man like that? He spent all his time trying to sell hard to sell machinery to medical companies. When he was unable to sell the last 3 machines and she questions him on what they were going to do, his reply is: "Everything is going to be alright". Just because she says in the movie, "I just don't care anymore", does not mean that she didn't care about her son because it is the wife who decides to leave Chris and take the son WITH HER. But it is Chris who INSISTS that his son stay with him no matter what, even if he and his son have to spend the night sleeping in the subway toilets! Come on, this guy can not be for real! It was at this point in the movie, that I felt that Chris Gardner must have had a nervous breakdown. Remember, at the start of this movie the audience hears Will Smith's voice (as Chris Gardner), stating that it was not until he had reached his late 20s that he met his father for the first time in his life. This is then the basis for his behaviour in insisting that his son be dragged around from pillar to post, from one hostel to the other, just so that they stay together. The other point I want to make is that Chris Gardner eventually won the unpaid internship as a Stock Broker but suppose there was someone else who wanted it just as badly or even more than he did and was selected over him. Then I think it would be safe to say that there would have been no book and certainly no movie deal (Will Smith is an executive producer of this movie). There are parts of this movie that made me wonder whether what I was watching was factual or exaggerated for the sake of dramatic effect. There are other aspects of this movie which seem to suggest that Black people are not honest when it comes to lending or paying money back that is owed by them. It appeared to me, that it was the white middle class men that Chris Gardner had to suck up to (impressing with rubic cube skills to paying $5 for a cab) which helped in his pursuit of landing the internship. Apparently, Chris Gardner and his now grown up son were on a recent episode of the Oprah Winfrey show but I missed it. Perhaps someone who watched the show could give their comments. I would like to know what his son thinks about his mother today. I think the only thing Chris Gardner's wife can be accused of is not having enough faith in her then husband.
Import Source: 
comments.nsf
Import Date: 
1322486030

7 years 5 months ago
Report
View Comments

AW's picture

AW

We just watched the movie (we always wait for the dvd). We all enjoyed it. I was glad that it was a movie that I could watch w/ my children. The one profanity that I recall, went right past them--they missed it.It was a touching story. It was good to see a man really giving it his all for "success." I think the story was inspirational when you look at the man's desire for security and what he deemed happiness.I mean look at how many men settle for mediocrity these days: couch potatoes and such. Look at how many men look to the women to make up the slack for their lack of work and drive. Look at how many men refuse to lead and trail blaze.It was unfortunate about the mom. It seems that although Chris gave his all in selling these machines, he did not exert enough effort in selling himself, nor his dream to his wife. That part to me didn't make sense. However, I think that we could all see the effort of the mom and her frustration.I think it just really showed that although this man was willing to give 100% to his pursuit, he was not willing to or unable to give 100% to his marriage, which should have been a priority.Like the other poster said, without the mistakes and failures, no movie!Things could've been different. The wife could've held on a bit longer. Chris could've gotten a 9-5 and sold machines on weekends, etc, or something along those lines. Chris could've sent his son to stay w/ his wife and her family until he got a sure footing in the business ( I still don't understand why he said she couldn't take care of him???? At least SHE had the support of her family)A lot of choices could've been different. How in the world did they owe the IRS when they didn't have anything???? Anyway, things WEREN'T different, so that is life.I imagine that people were just shocked and could not understand how the child would end up w/ the father instead of the mother. This is an unusual situation and people probably would react to that, not really looking at her as the bad mother.For those that don't know, this movie is quite loosely based on the real life events. So, don't believe the Hollywood-ized version. Just enjoy the movie for what it was meant to be: inspiring, touching.
Import Source: 
comments.nsf
Import Date: 
1322484669

7 years 4 months ago
Report
View Comments

Thandie Newton Newsletter

Subscribe to this news alert service to receive news and reviews on Thandie Newton

Unsubscribe | Unsubscribe All