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Jabari Banks stars as Will in the dramatic reimagining of the original series. Olly Sholotan is Carlton Banks, Coco Jones plays Hillary Banks, Akira Akbar portrays Ashley Banks and Jimmy Akingbola as the Banks family butler, Geoffrey.
Adrian Holmes and Cassandra Freeman play Uncle Phil and Aunt Viv. April Parker Jones plays Will’s mom (Aunt Viv’s sister) Viola “Vy” Smith. Karrueche Tran, Duane Martin, Charlie Hall and Scottie Thompson are also among the cast.
Michael Ealy, Marlon Wayans and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air alum Daphne Maxwell Reid also guest starred this season. Robert Glasper and Terrace Martin scored the music for the show.
Bel-Air is based on a 2019 fan-created dramatic reimagining of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air short film by novice filmmaker Morgan Williams. After the clip went viral, Smith reached out to Williams to discuss developing a series. Peacock acquired the show last year.
Like the original, Bel-Air centers around, Will, a West Philadelphia teen whose mother sends him to live with aunt and uncle in the swanky Los Angeles suburb of Bel-Air, Calif.
“As soon as I learned I booked the show, I was in California in two days. After that week, we flew to Philly and we started filming. I’ve been filming ever since,” Banks told The Hollywood Reporter.
Banks, 23, is a native of West Philadelphia like Smith. “I remember hearing stories about how The Fresh Prince would air [in Philly] and everything would shut down,” he recalled to THR. “Everybody just watched the episode and the next day were talking about it.”
Set in present-day, the first episode of Bel-Air ends with a cliff-hanger but audiences get introduced to Will’s life in West Philly before he moves to the West Coast, which wasn’t explored as deeply in the ‘90s sitcom. The show also touches on topics of race and class.
New episodes of Bel-Air premiered every Thursday following the initial Super Bowl Sunday debut on February 13. Additionally, to celebrate the launch of the show Peacock created an immersive campaign that includes an official series podcast hosted by DJ Jazzy Jeff and Aida Osman in partnership with iHeartRadio. The first podcast episode aired on Feb. 14 with new episodes dropping every Friday. In addition to the podcast, the streaming network hosted an immersive, interactive experience in February, which was held at a Beverly Hills mansion decorated to recreate the Banks family mansion for fans and influencers. The event featured a performance from Jadakiss and a mini-step show from the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity (Uncle Phil is a member of the fraternity).
How to Watch Bel-Air Online
Bel-Air is of many Peacock Originals, but you have to be a paying member to enjoy the entire season. Monthly subscriptions start at $4.99 ($49.99 a year) for Peacock Premium, an ad-supported tier. Peacock Premium Plus is $9.99 ($99.99 a year) a month to stream without commercials.
Both Premium and Premium Plus includes full access to thousands of movies and shows and Peacock exclusives such as Joe vs. Carole, Marry Me, MacGruber, Vigil, Saved by the Bell, The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip, Paris in Love and Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol. The membership includes channels only on Peacock as well as daily news, sports and pop culture content, kids shows and movies, Spanish-language shows and live sporting events like Super Bowl LVI, the 2022 Winter Olympics, the 2022 PGA Tour and WWE’s WrestleMania 38 (streaming live on Peacock April 2-3).
Besides fresh content, Peacock has thousands of fan-favorite shows like Yellowstone, Modern Family, Parks & Recreation, Saturday Night Live and The Office. And if you’re still on the fence about Peacock, there’s an option to test it out for free (no credit card required) but you’ll only get access to certain programs, which includes episodes of Below Deck, Charmed, Murder She Wrote, Punky Brewster, Chicago Fire, Dateline NBC, Chicago Med, Temptation Island, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Everybody Hates Chris, Psych, 30 Rock, Monk, Suits and Snapped.