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Usher wants Will Smith’s clout: Singer hopes upcoming film will impress Hollywood decision makers.

Usher tells MTV that he?s hoping his new film, ?In the Mix,? will support his quest to become an heir to the Will Smith throne. “There’s probably only one … Will Smith,” he said, beaming with admiration. “You look at the overall build of his career … I’d love to have something similar to that, man.” The singer views ?In the Mix,? due in theaters Nov. 23, as the first step on a journey to be filled with solid, quality roles following supporting parts in such films as “The Faculty,” “She’s All That” and “Texas Rangers.” “Films of the past,” he sighed. “Not to say that they weren’t great films, but you have to have a portfolio, a healthy portfolio. I’d rather know that the scripts I’m taking on are things that I really feel are going in the direction of the acting that I want to do.” At the time, he admits, his inexperience in Hollywood didn’t allow him much say on movie sets. But with nearly five years under his diamond-encrusted belt, Usher plans to cash in on the increased star power that comes with having a Grammy-winning, platinum-drenched singing career. “I’m not looking to just throw that power around,” he said. “I want to have relationships with the right directors out there. I want to come with projects that are well-written, well-respected and have great names, as well as great actors, attached.”

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