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Will Smith, HBO Max tease 'Fresh Prince' reunion sure to make fans laugh, cry

The unscripted reunion special is set to air on HBO Max on Nov. 19.
Credit: AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File
In this Dec. 16, 2008, file photo, Will Smith, right, and Alfonso Ribeiro pose together at the premiere of "Seven Pounds" in Los Angeles.

INDIANAPOLIS — The "Fresh Prince" is going back to Bel-Air.

Will Smith announced Friday the cast from the '90s hit sitcom "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" is getting back together for a reunion special.

"These are the people who made me the man I am today," Smith said in an Instagram post with a teaser video of the reunion.

The reunion will appear on HBO Max Nov. 19.

In the teaser, Smith is joined by most of the original cast: Tatyana Ali (Ashley Banks), Karyn Parsons (Hilary Banks), Joseph Marcell (Geoffrey Butler), Daphne Maxwell Reid (Vivian Banks) and Alfonso Ribeiro (Carlton Banks), DJ Jazzy Jeff (Jazz), and even Janet Hubert, who played the original Aunt Viv before she was replaced by Maxwell Reid.

It's the first time Smith and Hubert have sat down and had a candid conversation in 27 years, when she left the show.

In the reunion — taped on the 30th anniversary of the sitcom's original premiere date — the cast looks back at the cultural impact of the show. The trailer was full of both funny and emotional moments, including when cast members reflected on the legacy of James Avery, who played Uncle Phil and died in 2013.

"James is the heart of the show," Ali said.

"James Avery was this 6-foot-4 Shakespearean beast, and I wanted him to think I was good," Smith said, recalling an emotional scene where Will questions why his father isn't involved in his life. "I fall into his arms at the end of the scene, and he's holding me. And the shot pans off, and he whispered into my ear, 'Now that's acting.'"

HBO Max is a streaming platform that launched earlier this year with access to all HBO programs, plus hit movies and Max original projects.

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