In an interview with People published Wednesday, Pinkett Smith said she and her husband are “still figuring it out.” But in a separate NBC interview, the 52-year-old said that the pair are still not together.
Promoting her upcoming memoir, Worthy, Pinkett Smith spoke to Hoda Kotb in Pinkett Smith’s hometown of Baltimore—and the first slice of it was broadcast on the Today show Wednesday morning.
She said that she and Smith are still legally married, but have been living “completely separate lives” since 2016. Kotb clarified that what Pinkett Smith was talking about was “not a divorce on paper.” “Right,” Pinkett Smith answered.
She also said that while she has considered a legal divorce, she hasn’t been able to actually bring herself to do it. “I made a promise that there will never be a reason for us to get a divorce,” Pinkett Smith explained, adding that she simply hasn’t “been able to break that promise.”
When asked about what precipitated the “fracture” in their relationship, Pinkett Smith said it was “a lot of things.” “By the time we got to 2016, we were just exhausted with trying,” she added. “I think we were both kind of just still stuck in our fantasy of what we thought the other person should be.”
In public the couple once denied there were issues in their relationship, with Pinkett Smith even joking with Andy Cohen in a 2017 episode of Bravo chat show Watch What Happens Live about how she and Will keep it “hot.”
“I’m baffled, really,” she said, laughing.
But for years, the couple have been known to have had problems with their marriage. In a 2020 episode of her Red Table Talk show, the pair publicly discussed how Pinkett Smith had entered into another relationship—or “entanglement,” as she described it—with singer August Alsina.
Pinkett Smith said in the show that she and Smith “broke up,” but it wasn’t clear until now that they never reconciled at all.
Why did she and Will keep up the appearance of being a happily married couple? Kotb asked Pinkett Smith.
“I think just not being ready yet, still trying to figure out between the two of us how to be in partnership, and in regards to how we present that to people—and we hadn’t figured that out.”