NASHVILLE, TN — The long wait regarding Will Smith’s first project since the infamous Oscar slap moment is about to make its debut. “Emancipation” has its complete opening this Friday on Apple TV + after a previous soft opening in a few select theaters in such cities as New York, Atlanta and Washington D.C. But in a lengthy interview published this week director Antoine Fuqua reveals he had extensive talks with Apple TV + regarding the film.

“They were very sensitive to myself, to Will, to all the people who worked on the movie,” Fuqua told Vanity Fair. “There was never a conversation with me and Apple or my producers, Todd Black and Jon Mone or Heather Washington, about the movie not coming out.”

He added that “it was more about, ‘We’re assessing everything. We’re seeing what people are saying.’ They were very careful about it. Then we showed the film to some people and their reactions were really positive, and we discussed it along the way.”

Fuqua was quite complimentary of Apple TV in the press release. “I think Apple considered all those things, and we discussed a lot of those things. Then a decision was made by the people in charge of distribution and the money at Apple — and I’m grateful, I’m really grateful,” he said. 

There’s a trailer available now for “Emancipation” on the Apple TV + website.