All the media hype surrounding Will Smith’s marriage to Jada Pinkett Smith makes one forget about his first wife, Sheree Zampino. Will and the founder of Whoop Ash, who share an adult son, Trey, with Zampino, separated in 1995 after three years of marriage. Two years later, he tied the knot with Jada. As so often in a patchwork family, the early days were rather bumpy. On a May 2018 episode of Jada’s Red Table Talk, Zampino joined the Madagascar star to discuss their past differences. Both parties recalled that the two women clashed early on because of Trey’s shared upbringing. According to Jada, on one such occasion, she answered her stepson’s phone, which quickly resulted in her and Zampino exchanging “fighting words.” “You picked up the phone and I wasn’t really being respectful.” Zampino admitted and revealed that Jada hung up.
Things couldn’t have been easy either, as Will remarried just two years after his split from Zampino. In October 2018, Will himself appeared on Red Table Talk to discuss transitioning from one marriage to another. During an incident while still married to Zampino, the I Am Legend star recalled “sitting in a booth and … crying and laughing uncontrollably” because he didn’t mix his aversion to divorce with his feelings for Jada could reconcile. Shortly thereafter, he and Zampino ended things and the rest was history.
Although the fences are being repaired on both sides today, Jada and Zampino recently opened up about the hard work it took to get there.
Jada Pinkett Smith and Sheree Zampino used shared journals to resolve their past conflicts
Jada Pinkett Smith and Sheree Zampino have had to mature on both sides to achieve the bond they have today. “We’ve developed a really nice sisterhood,” Jada said of husband Will Smith’s first wife on the Oct. 19 episode of “Red Table Talk.” However, it took the ‘Girls’ Trip’ star a while to understand that marrying Will also meant joining Zampino’s family, as the actor-entrepreneur shares son Trey Smith with the ‘Emancipation’ star. “For me, it was really all about maturity,” Jada said. “Not understanding the marriage dynamic. Like, ‘Okay, if divorce papers are sent out and people are over it, then that’s done.’ You know what? It’s never finished.”
Ultimately, both women came to a peaceful, respectful resolution. As Zampino shared on Red Table Talk, her priority was Jada’s treatment of Trey, and she praised the Matrix: Reloaded star for always “wanting what’s best for him.” Jada also noted that the two used a shared journal to get their arguments across. “We could have difficult conversations, we could admit each other,” Jada said of the notebook tactic.
Zampino similarly told Us Weekly in August how great Jada was to Trey. “For him to call her mom, he feels comfortable,” she explained at the time, adding that she will always be “very secure in my role in his life.”