Columbia Offers 'Pursuit' of Dream Internships

Like the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, eight lucky people will have the opportunity to have their lives "flipped, turned upside down."

Columbia Pictures, the studio behind Will Smith's upcoming film "The Pursuit of Happyness," is teaming together to offer contestants dream internships with eight of the world's leading companies: Gap Inc., The Hollywood Reporter, Morgan Stanley, NBC, the National Football League (NFL), People magazine, PlayStation and Yahoo!

The "Pursue It: The Ultimate Internship Contest" ties in with the film's theme about hard work and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. Based on the true story of the previously homeless and jobless Chris Gardner (Smith), the film centers on his struggles from living with his five-year-old son (Jaden Christopher Syre Smith) in a train station bathroom to his ascent to a partnership in a Chicago brokerage firm, thanks to a lucky break.

"Chris Gardner, the person I portray in 'The Pursuit of Happyness' is a bright, talented guy who's barely making ends meet until he gets an internship that enables him to pursue his dreams," says star and producer Will Smith.

"America is the land of opportunity, but to succeed in the corporate world everyone needs that first break, that foot in the door," adds Steve Tisch, one of the film's producers and a co-owner of the NFL's New York Giants football team. "The winners of this contest will get a unique chance both to learn about how great companies work and to demonstrate their own creativity, energy and determination."

Those interested can apply online at now through Sunday, Nov. 5 by selecting their desired internship destination and creating a five-minute video sharing their personal "words to live by" and how philosophy mkes them uniquely suited for the internship.

As a bonus, the internship winners will also get a trip to Hollywood to meet Smith himself at the gala premiere of "Pursuit of Happyness," which also stars Thandie Newton and opens nationwide on Friday, Dec. 15.

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