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‘The Stakes Are Heightened’: Duane Martin Shares How His ‘Bel-Air’ Character Will Have a Connection to Uncle Phil

Duane Martin revealed that he will be a part of Will Smith‘s “Bel-Air” reimagining while also dishing on his upcoming projects. 

In an interview with Essence, the veteran actor talked about his celebrated career in acting and even gave fans an insight on his new role in “Bel-Air.”

Duane Martin (left) and Will Smith (right) pose for photos at the premiere of “Deliver Us From Eva” at the Cinerama Dome and after-party at the Sunset Room on Jan. 29, 2003, in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

“Bel-Air” is the dramatic reimagining of the beloved sitcom “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” and the show will follow “Will’s complicated journey from the streets of West Philadelphia to the gated mansions of Bel-Air.” The show will also delve into serious conflicts and issues that are happening in the world today.

Although the producers of the show have kept most of the details under wraps, Martin did reveal a little bit about his character and that he will be playing a campaign manager when Uncle Phil is running for office on the show.

“I’m there to be a fixer. As you know, Will and Carlton are always getting in trouble. All of these things can affect his campaign. But it’s a complete hardcore drama. It’s not no laugh track. The stakes are heightened,” Martin said.

While the series has experienced some hiccups such as its struggle to hold on to showrunners, it has already been green-lit for two seasons. 

In addition to “Bel-Air,” Martin is writing an episodic show about his life as a sports agent. “A lot of people don’t know I’ve been a sports agent for over 25 years. It’s about my life growing up as a young African-American in a white male dominated business, trying to be a mentor for some of these young athletes,” Martin said.

Martin describes that as an agent, people tried to soil his character and practice and pick apart his contracts. He said he also has so many “scandalous” stories that span decades of work experience. “I don’t want to write a book. I’d rather do an episodic to tell this story to give people the visual of what that life was like.”

Jada Pinkett Smith, a good friend of Martin’s, will executive produce the show and release it as her first project purchased under her “Red Table Talk” banner. 

Currently Martin stars alongside Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba in “L.A’s Finest,” and he will be reprising his role in the reboot of “Real Husbands of Hollywood,” which also stars Kevin Hart, Nick Cannon, Boris Kodjoe, Nelly, J.B. Smooth and Robin Thicke.

The actor shared a photo of the cast of “Real Husbands of Hollywood” on his Instagram and revealed that the reboot will return in February on BET+ after initially ending in 2016.

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