Mr. and Mrs. Smith: Donald Glover and Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s Creative Falling Out and Glover’s Changing Views on Marriage Mr. and Mrs. Smith: Donald Glover and Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s Creative Falling Out and Glover’s Changing Views on Marriage
Donald Glover Opens Up About His Creative Differences With Phoebe Waller-Bridge on Mr. and Mrs. Smith
Donald Glover has opened up about his creative differences with Phoebe Waller-Bridge on the upcoming Prime Video series Mr. and Mrs. Smith, which ultimately led to Waller-Bridge‘s departure from the project.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Glover explained that he and Waller-Bridge had different creative visions for the show, and that they were unable to find a way to work together effectively.
“I think a good relationship is one where you don’t waver from the extremely uncomfortable,” Glover said. “And I don’t know if we were ever going to get to a place where we could be completely brutal to each other.”
“It might’ve just been cultural,” he continued. “You’ve got to think, Fleabag was written entirely by her, they don’t really do writers’ rooms in the U.K. And I look back at Atlanta, and we built a culture where we could say mean things to each other or be like, ‘That idea is kind of [crap],’ and then we’d laugh. You weren’t afraid to say something — but we also had the right to roast you. It’s just how we got the laughs.”
Glover also said that he and Waller-Bridge never felt comfortable enough with each other to be able to work together effectively.
“And that’s OK. That’s what happens when you’re two captains,” he added.
Donald Glover’s Changing Views on Marriage
Glover, who was previously outspoken about being anti-marriage, also revealed in the interview that he had a change of heart about marriage after tying the knot with his longtime partner, Michelle White, during the production of Mr. and Mrs. Smith.
“I think what happened was, well, number one, I didn’t know what I was getting out of it. I felt like I knew what she was getting out of it, and I didn’t feel like she was being honest, necessarily, about what she was getting out of it,” Glover said.
“I was thinking about it in such a silly way, which I see now,” he admitted. “Now I realize, yeah, maybe she’s gaining some stuff, but she’s also losing a lot of stuff. And we eventually had an honest talk, and she was like, ‘I’m a traditional woman.’ And when she said that some part of me was like, ‘And I want to help you be that.’ Whatever she needs me to be, that makes me happy.’
Glover’s change of heart about marriage is reflected in the final episodes of his FX series Atlanta, which originally ended with his character, Earn, and his longtime girlfriend, Van, played by Zazie Beetz, going their separate ways.
“That last episode in Atlanta was not supposed to end with [Van and Earn together]. Originally, it was this whole other episode. They go their separate ways,” Glover recalled.
“We kept fighting [over it] in the writers’ room,” Glover continued. “It was split right down the middle, the men and the women, with the women literally feeling like she shouldn’t be with him and then all the boys, like, ‘He’s doing it all for them.'”
“And then because the pandemic happened, everybody just started [saying to their spouses], ‘I only want to be with you,’ and we came back and wrote that [final] episode,” he concluded.
Mr. and Mrs. Smith, starring Donald Glover and Maya Erskine, is now streaming on Prime Video.