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Big Willie's Back: Will Smith's Hip-Hop Comeback Headlines BET Awards Sunday

Will Smith, the Oscar-winning actor known for blockbuster films like "Men in Black" and chart-topping rap hits as one half of DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince, is set to make a musical comeback. Smith will perform new material at the 2024 BET Awards, marking his first major musical appearance in several years.
Smith first rose to fame with DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince, known for lighthearted hits like "Summertime" and "Parents Just Don't Understand," which earned them a Grammy Award for best rap performance. His transition to acting proved equally successful, with iconic roles in "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" and "Ali," earning him critical acclaim and box-office success.
Recently, Smith contributed "Light Em Up," a collaboration with reggae artist Sean Paul, to the "Bad Boys for Life" soundtrack. The track, released in early 2024, marks his first new music in nearly half a decade.

Smith's career has not been without controversy. His 2022 Oscars incident, in which he slapped comedian Chris Rock onstage, sparked a media firestorm and led to a temporary break from the spotlight. His return to the BET Awards stage signifies a new chapter, where he aims to reconnect with audiences through his music.
Connie Orlando, BET's executive vice president of specials, music programming and music strategy, said, "From his start as a rapper to 'The Fresh Prince' to being a box-office king, we are honored to welcome him back to grace the BET Awards stage."

The 2024 BET Awards will also feature performances from GloRilla, Ice Spice, Latto, Ms. Lauryn Hill and YG Marley, Muni Long, Sexyy Red, Shaboozey, Tyla and Victoria Monét. Usher will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award, and Taraji P. Henson will host the event for the third time.

The BET Awards will air live on Sunday, June 30, at 8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific times on BET.

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