It was Denzel Washington who counselled Smith on how to proceed with his first starring movie role, as a young gay con man in Six Degrees of Separation (1993). Although it was scripted that his character would kiss another man, Smith was reluctant. He sought counsel from Washington, whose advice boiled down to, ''Don't be kissing no man." Smith informed the furious director, Fred Schepsi, that the homosexual smooch would have to be faked. When the movie opened, the controversy was smoothed over by critical praise for Smith's performance.
US (1993): Drama/Comedy; 111 min, Rated R, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc
Leonard Maltin Review:
Stylish, opened-up adaptation of John Guare's stage success about a handsome con man who convinces well-off, gullible New Yorkers that he is Sidney Poitier's son. Impressively acted film flows smoothly in its first two acts, before the satire gives way to chest-thumping tragedy. Dominant virtue is the wide-screen snap Schepisi gives to the New York settings, both indoors and out; only a letterboxed video will do it justice. Based on a true incident. Many NYC society types pop up in cameos. Shot in Super 35.
Stockard Channing Ouisa Kittredge Will Smith Paul Donald Sutherland Flan Kittredge Ian McKellen Geoffrey Mary Beth Hurt Kitty Bruce Davison Larkin Richard Masur Dr. Fine Anthony Michael Hall Trent Conway Heather Graham Elizabeth Eric Thal Rick Anthony Rapp Ben Osgood Perkins Woody Catherine Kellner Tess Jeffrey Abrams Doug Joe Pentangelo Police Officer Lou Milione Hustler Brooke Hayward Duchin Connie Peter Duchin Sandy Sam Stoneburner Carter Maeve McGuire Polly Kelly Bishop Adele John Cunningham John Vasek Simek Frank the Doorman Chuck Close Andy Kazuko Jeannie Adele Chatfield-Taylor Paula Maggie Burke Loft Party Guest Edmond Genest Loft Party Guest Michael Stanley Kirby Loft Party Guest David Callegati Art Dealer Daniel von Bargen Detective John Rowe Usher Elizabeth Rossa Bride Diane Hartford Julia Frank O'Brien Eddie Ann McDonough Teacher Jose Rabelo 2nd Elevator Man Todd Alcott Concert Goer JoAnna Noble Concert Goer Miriam Fond Nurse Annie Meisels Doug's Girl Mitch Kolpan Policeman Michele Greco Workman Tony Zazaula Rainbow Room Captain Arthur McGill Hansom Cab Driver Susan Tabor Posh Couple Paul Schmidt Posh Couple Carolyn Groves Cocktail Party Guest Jeannine Moore Cocktail Party Guest Tim Saunders Cocktail Party Guest David Tice Cocktail Party Guest Redman Maxfield Fred Margaret Eginton Mary Margaret Thomson Grandmother at Baptism Vince O'Brien Grandfather at Baptism Anne Swift Guest at Baptism Richmond Hoxie Guest at Baptism Kitty Carlisle Hart Mrs. Bannister Madhur Jaffrey Guest of Honor Arthur Brooks Mrs. Bannister's Guest Jacqueline Bertrand Mrs. Bannister's Guest Lisa Crosby Mrs. Bannister's Guest Nancy Duerr Mrs. Bannister's Guest Brian McConnachie Mrs. Bannister's Guest Angela Thornton Mrs. Bannister's Guest Robert Trumbull Mrs. Bannister's Guest Richard Whiting Mrs. Bannister's Guest
Director: Fred Schepisi
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