The Pursuit of Happyness is a 2006 American biographical drama film, directed by Gabriele Muccino and based on the true story of Chris Gardner. The film stars Will Smith as Gardner, an on-and-off-homeless salesman-turned stockbroker.
The screenplay by Steven Conrad is based on the eponymous best-selling memoir written by Gardner with Quincy Troupe. The film was released on December 15, 2006, by Columbia Pictures. For his performance, Smith received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor and a Golden Globe nomination.
In 1981, in San Francisco, the smart salesman and family man Chris Gardner invests the family savings in Osteo National bone-density scanners, an apparatus twice as expensive as an x-ray machine but with a slightly clearer image. This white elephant financially breaks the family, bringing troubles to his relationship with his wife Linda, who leaves him and moves to New York where she has received a job in a pizza parlor. She wishes to take their son Christopher with her, but Chris refuses because they both know that Linda will be unable to take care of him.
Without money or a wife, but committed to his son Christopher, Chris sees the chance to fight for a stockbroker internship position at Dean Witter, offering a more promising career at the end of a six month unpaid training period. During that period, Chris goes through a lot of hardship personally and professionally. When he thinks he is “stable”, he finds himself $600 poorer when he is notified that the government has taken out that last bit of money he had in his bank account for his taxes. He is rendered homeless because he is unable to pay his rent.He is forced to stay in a bathroom on a train station and then he is seen scrambling from work everyday to a place called Glyde for people who are homeless. He has to leave work everyday so that he is there by 5 in the evening along with his son so to be assured of a place to sleep. He is seen carrying his suitcase to work because he doesn’t have a home. At work, there are nineteen other candidates for the one position. Meanwhile, he encounters many challenges and difficulties, including a period of homelessness and troubles with the IRS. Chris Gardner is also especially talented at solving a rubik’s cube.
At the very end of the movie, you can catch Will Smith walking across the street and sharing a glance with a gentleman. The gentleman is none other than the real Chris Gardner.