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A Terrified Will Smith Tried Stand-Up Comedy For The First Time And Honestly? Not Bad

Helped by Dave Chappelle, the Aladdin star joked he doesn't like Red Table Talk because Jada's spilling all his secrets.

Posted on March 13, 2019, at 12:02 p.m. ET

Will Smith's Bucket List / Via Facebook: willsmithsbucketlist

You may think of Will Smith as a famous comic actor, known for his roles in Hitch, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, or the upcoming Aladdin.

So it might surprise you to learn that the 50-year-old star's biggest fear is performing stand-up comedy.

But Smith decided to take to the comedy stage for the first time in the latest episode of his Facebook Watch show Will Smith's Bucket List, in which the actor confronts his fears head-on by doing things like skydiving and swimming with sharks.

"The crazy thing is I’m more nervous about doing stand-up than I am about bungee jumping out of a helicopter over the Grand Canyon," the star says in the Wednesday episode.

Smith explains that unlike in music, where the audience might sing along if you forget the lyrics, in stand-up "if you stutter [or] you stumble, if there’s one moment where your heart jumps… they see it."

So, Smith enlists "the master," Dave Chappelle, who praises Smith for confronting his fears.

"That's a great fucking way to live," Chappelle tells Smith, "but the thing that is so admirable about it is — even myself, I rarely step out of my comfort zone."

Chappelle does reveal one thing that makes him scared: performing in front of Eddie Murphy.

"I don't get starstruck or that shit," he tells Smith, "but something about when I see him in the audience, it makes me feel bad about myself."

Chappelle shares three tips with Smith on how to win over a comedy crowd: Be confident, "pick the right shit to talk about," and "be interesting all the time."

Although Smith admittedly looks a little nervous as he opens for Chappelle in front of a sold-out crowd, he obviously took the comedian's advice to heart and jokes about his own family.

In one bit, he shares a hilarious anecdote about his dad calling up amid the box office success of Independence Day (1996).

In another riff about all the projects his famous family is working on, Smith asks the audience if they've been watching Red Table Talk, the Facebook Watch show hosted by his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

"You can enjoy it," he tells the crowd, "because she not telling all yo' business!"

But the joke swiftly becomes a tad awkward as Smith admits he didn't expect his wife to actually be in the audience when he delivered the line.

"I wasn't expecting to have to say it in front of you!" he says, looking a little flustered. "I just never imagined you would be here."

"Will!" Chappelle then shouts from offstage. "Stick to the script!"

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.