All-time leading scorer Katie Smith retiring exactly the way she wants
“One thing you’ve got to do as an actor is portfolio management,” says this person. “Will went through a place where he didn’t do a lot of movies, and none has been great.” The bottom line: “He could still be highly successful, but it was automatic before. Now audiences will look more carefully.” Off-Message Media: Smith, 44, and his 14-year-old son gave a joint interview to New York magazine that one prominent producer describes as “a jaw-dropper.” Will Smith described himself as “a student of patterns,” adding, “At heart, I’m a physicist.” Even as the elder Smith described how visitors to his household would be surprised to find that it is “simple and basic,” Jaden declared: “I like Cartier,” noting “before that, it was Louis” (as in, Vuitton). And that type of coverage leads to Less Fresh Prince and More Royal Prince: This began with buzz about Smith’s behavior (and his gigantic trailer) during the making of MiB3. Says a prominent film exec who has worked with Smith: “That aw-shucks, incredibly charming, self-effacing spirit doesn’t seem to play anymore. You can see it on talk shows. He’s got that energy and positive attitude, but it doesn’t have the same contagious quality.” Another Smith associate believes such behavior takes a creative toll. “The control-freak stuff hits you,” says this person. “You’ve got to listen to people. Movies don’t do well when there’s a hermetically sealed environment.” STORY:Could ‘After Earth’ End Will Smith’s Box Office Domination? Family Issues: The Smith family’s efforts to make stars of daughter Willow and Jaden might be too much, too soon. “The Barrymores got really close to what I see in my head for my family,” Smith told the Associated Press. But execs and talent reps say making Jaden the lead in After Earth — conceived as the first in a trilogy — was a mistake.
After winning two championships in the now-defunct American Basketball League, Smith has spent the rest of her career in the WNBA, playing the better part of seven seasons with the Minnesota Lynx before winning two titles with the Detroit Shock. More than three months after 5-foot-11 guard announced her intention to retire, Smith is comfortable with the decision, even if she never seemed to go out of her way to make it well-known. Rather than a tearful press conference or even any sort of public announcement, Smith simply replied to an innocuous tweet from a friend , nonchalantly slipping in that she playing her last season. “That’s just kind of my personality,” Smith says. “Press releases or big to-dos, that’s just not really in my M.O.” Of course the online forum also made the announcement easier than having to say the words for the first time at a press conference. “Part of it too, initially, is that you’re a little nervous to say it because saying it makes it true,” Smith says. “‘Oh yeah, this is really happening.'” Regardless of the low-key manner of the announcement, word still spread: The player with 7,872 career points, more than any other professional women’s basketball player — she’s second in WNBA history with 6,439 points — would finally be walking off from the court. She’s not going far though, at least if she has her way. Smith wants to coach now that her playing career is ending, a transition she has prepared for during her final seasons. In addition to sharing her veteran knowledge with her WNBA teammates, Smith has also spent the past two seasons as a graduate assistant with her alma mater, Ohio State. “As you get older, it’s just not about you so much,” Smith says. “It’s always been about the game, and I’m looking forward to be able to try to impart and try to make another basketball player’s journey better by something I can say to them or show them or teach them.” But as the baseball notion holds, “The best hitters often make the worst hitting coaches,” so too must Smith learn to handle that what came so naturally to her on the basketball court may take more instruction for others to master. She’ll also have to accept that even great coaches cannot directly affect games as much as they would like, especially when the coach is used to being the go-to player with the game on the line. “Yes, you can tell and you can express what you need to get done, but the bottom line is that you don’t have as much control as if you were playing,” Smith says.