Jada Pinkett Smith: How Willow Smith Reacted to Her Role in ‘The Matrix’ Films

Jada Pinkett Smith’s role in The Matrix Reloaded didn’t just leave an impact on fans — it also had an impact on her children. For example, Willow Smith had a very specific reaction to the movie as a child. Here’s a look at how her mom earned a role in the Matrix franchise without having to audition.

Willow Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith | Jerod Harris/WireImage

Why Jada Pinkett Smith didn’t have to try out for her role in ‘The Matrix’ franchise

Firstly, a little background. The Wachowski’s science fiction film The Matrix was a major hit that impacts pop culture to this day. The stage was set for the sequel to be a major success. Many actors would die for a role that prominent. Interestingly, Jada didn’t even have to try out for her role in The Matrix Reloaded.

“I met the Wachowskis for the first Matrix, so I really didn’t need to read anything when I was told ‘They created this character for you,’” Jada told the Chicago Tribune. “’Really? Any nudity?’ ‘Nope.’ ‘All right then! Let’s get it on!’”

A trailer for The Matrix

How the Jada Pinkett Smith’s kids reacted to her role in ‘The Matrix Reloaded’ and its video game spin-off

During an interview with Blackfilm, Jada discussed how her children reacted to her role in the film and its spin-off video game, Enter the Matrix. “Man, let me tell you,” Jada said. “Between Willow, my bonus child and Jaden, Trey is just elated. He’s through the moon. [Trey] can’t believe that I’m in a video game. He got an opportunity to play the game. He was like, ‘That video game is so cool.’ And he plays everything, so if I can impress Trey, I’m really doing something.”

Jada further explained how Willow reacted to the film. “With Jaden and Willow, every time she sees Niobe, she goes, ‘That’s Mommy,’ which is good because Willow always wants to be Superman or Spiderman, and I will tell her that she’s Superwoman but she insists she’s Superman,” Jada recalled. “Now she has a female superhero she can look up to.” Jada’s comments reflect conversations about female representation in media which would become a lot more common in the 2010s and 2020s. 

A trailer for The Matrix Reloaded

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How the world reacted to ‘The Matrix Reloaded’

So how did the world react to The Matrix Reloaded? According to Box Office  Mojo, the movie earned over $741 million against a budget of $150 million. The film performed significantly better than its predecessor. For comparison, Box Office Mojo reports the original Matrix earned $466 million against a budget of $63 million.

Jada would reprise her role in the following sequel, The Matrix Revolutions. Interestingly, Box Office Mojo says The Matrix Revolutions earned a mere $427 million against a budget of $150 million, a significant drop in revenue from the previous film. In addition, Jada is slated to appear in the upcoming Matrix sequel. Jada’s role in the Matrix franchise is iconic — and it also made an impression on her young child.