Will Smith Praises Working with His Canine Costar in “I Am Legend”: 'Like Working with a Brilliant Actress'

A German Shepherd named Abbey starred in the film as Sam, his character's only living companion

<p>Warner Bros/Kobal/Shutterstock </p> Will Smith in

Warner Bros/Kobal/Shutterstock

Will Smith in 'I Am Legend'

Will Smith loved his canine costar in I Am Legend so much he tried to make her part of his family.

In an episode of Hot Ones released on Thursday, June 6, the Bad Boys star, 55, confirmed to host Sean Evans that he tried to adopt the German Shepherd named Abbey who played his character's only living companion in the 2007 post-apocalyptic horror film. In I Am Legend, Smith played Dr. Robert Neville, the only man in Manhattan to survive after humanity was killed or turned into vampire-like monsters.

"It was like Abbey spoke English," he told Evans, 38, of the main dog used in the film, joking that she could find your cell phone for you if asked. "Like, she literally could understand you, it was the weirdest thing."

<p>First We Feast</p> Will Smith on 'Hot Ones'

First We Feast

Will Smith on 'Hot Ones'

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer​​, from celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. 

"Abby was the breadwinner of her family," he laughed before saying that she "had to stay" where she was and couldn't become a family pet.

Smith went on to describe how Abbey was so well trained, she did her stunts, pointing to the scene in which his character had to choke the injured dog when she started biting him.

"Abbey's doing that," the King Richard star said of the canine's ability to attack and play dead in the scene. "[A dog trainer] trained Abbey to go limp and I laid her [down]. How do you train a dog to go limp?" he asked rhetorically, mimicking the action.

"It was like working with a brilliant actress," Smith said.

Related: I Am Legend 2: Everything We Know About the Sequel to Will Smith's 2007 Post-Apocalyptic Film

<p>Hector Vivas/Getty</p> Will Smith

Hector Vivas/Getty

Will Smith

Fifteen years after I Am Legend first debuted in theaters and went on to make over $585 million at the worldwide box office, a sequel with Michael B. Jordan attached was first announced in 2022.

Since then, both Smith and Jordan, 37, have given updates on the state of the project.

"I think it's looking good," Smith told Entertainment Tonight in May. "[We have some] really solid ideas... I think we're going to make it on screen together. That dude is the truth, so I would love to do that."

The PEOPLE Puzzler crossword is here! How quickly can you solve it? Play now!

Jordan told PEOPLE in June that the I Am Legend 2 team was "still working on the script" to make sure it was "up to par."

"It doesn't have a release date or anything like that. I'm not sure exactly where we're going to be filming that one, but I'm really excited to get in front of the camera with [Smith]," he continued.

The Black Panther star said he was "excited" to work in front of the camera with Smith, who he'd "looked up to for a really long time."

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.