After starring alongside his father Will Smith in the heartwarming 2006 film The Pursuit of Happyness, who knew Jaden Smith would grow into someone who could legitimately outrap your favorite rapper? The rapper turns 17 years old today (July 8).

For a while, it looked like Jaden was going to stick to the acting route. After The Pursuit of Happyness became a box office success, Jaden nailed starring roles in The Day the Earth Stood Still and The Karate Kid reboot. However, his film career came to a hard halt when he teamed up with his dad for 2013's After Earth. The film was an unmitigated failure on nearly every account.

But like his father, Jaden still had some grasp on how to rap. After being brushed off with his earlier releases, fans genuinely warmed up to the thought of Jaden being a legit rapper by 2014. Jaden hasn't received platinum-selling accolades like his dad, but projects like This Is An Album showed he was more technically skilled and probably had more potential.

What also makes Jaden a mainstream figure is his eccentric persona. In addition to wearing a Batman suit to a wedding and a dress to prom, he's known for his candid but head-scratching tweets. The public hasn't quite decided on if they're insightful or just ridiculous, but opinion tends to err toward the former.

Jaden's next big role actually mixes hip-hop and acting. He's set to star in Netflix's upcoming series The Get Down, which focuses on hip-hop during its gestation days in the South Bronx, N.Y.

Watch Jaden Smith's "Blue Ocean" Video

See 100 Hip-Hop Facts That Will Blow Your Mind