Why Will Smith Struggled to Kiss Eva Mendes In ‘Hitch’

Will Smith is one of those actors who makes the job look easy. He possesses a certain skill-set that has allowed him to step into all sorts of roles seemingly with ease. But unsurprisingly, it has its challenges.

In a throwback interview, he and Eva Mendes revealed that there was one particular struggle between them while shooting their movie Hitch. Ahead, learn more about the film and the issue they ran into on the set.

Will Smith on the red carpet
Will Smith on the red carpet at an event in February 2015 | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

What is ‘Hitch?’

Hitch is a 2005 romantic comedy that features Smith as Alex “Hitch” Hitchens, a professional dating consultant who helps clueless clients win over their dream partners. Hitch usually has all the answers to helping people find everlasting love, but none of his tips seem to work when he meets and starts to fall for gossip columnist Sara Melas (Mendes).

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Hitch debuted to average reviews and earned over $300 million at the box office, with many critics praising Smith’s performance.

Eva Mendes was ‘nervous’ about kissing Will Smith in ‘Hitch’

When it came down to shooting a love scene with Smith, Mendes became super nervous, she said in a throwback appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show.

In a bid to calm herself down, she sought out her favorite comfort food: a tuna fish sandwich crammed with extra onions and Doritos, a dish she referred to as a “stank breath special.” The smell of the sandwich reportedly repulsed Smith. But after Mendes swallowed a few Altoids, they were able to pull off the shoot, she said.

“I never asked you. How was it?” Mendes asked Smith as he replied, “It was absolutely wonderful.”

Will Smith and Eva Mendes
Will Smith and Eva Mendes on the set of ‘Hitch’ in June 2004 in New York City | Ian Wingfield/Getty Images

Meanwhile, Kevin James also mentioned that he felt “intimidated” when it came down to smooching Smith for the clip included in the trailer above. But he, too, eventually got over it. “I’m not a gay man, but I will say this: I get it now. I know what all the hype is about,” he mused.

Eva Mendes wants to reunite for a ‘Hitch’ sequel

Mendes expressed interest in shooting a follow-up in an interview with Entertainment Tonight in February, ahead of the 15th anniversary of the original movie’s release.

“You know what? It’s time for a ‘Hitch 2,'” she said. “Will, let’s do this. ‘Hitch 2.'”

“It’d be fun ’cause it’d be now in the world of all these dating apps. What would Hitch do? He’d be out of a job,” she teased.

Mendes has not done a movie since 2014’s Lost River, taking a backseat to her film career to focus on family life with Ryan Gosling and their two daughters: Esmeralda and Amada. She noted to Entertainment Tonight that she still likes to act but has grown to be more conscious and selective of the projects she takes on now that she’s a mom.

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“Acting is something that I will always love. It’s just like now that I have children, I’m kind of extreme,” she continued. “There’s just so many things I won’t do. Like I won’t do most of the movies I’ve done in the past. A lot of things are off that list. I don’t want to do anything too violent. Of course, I don’t want to do anything too sexual or sexual at all. So I’m basically like, ‘Disney, I’m all yours, Disney.’ That’s all that’s left.”

It doesn’t appear that Smith ever acknowledged her comments about shooting a sequel to Hitch. However, he has done several over the years, most recently appearing in 2020’s Bad Boys for Life, the third film in the Bad Boys franchise.

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