“I Was Teary Eyed”: Venus Williams Opens Up on Her Father’s Biopic Starring Will Smith

Published 04/15/2021, 3:30 PM EDT
Serena Williams (R) of the USA celebrates with her father Richard Williams and sister Venus Williams after her Ladies’ Singles final match against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland on day twelve of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 7, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)


Born one year apart, both Venus Williams and her younger sister Serena Williams turned professional at age 14. The Williams sisters ushered a new era in women’s tennis and inspired millions of young girls to dream big.

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However, few know the person who introduced and guided the two sisters to tennis was their father, Richard Williams, who started giving tennis lessons to Venus and Serena when they were four and five, respectively.

Serena Williams of The United States is congratulated by her sister and opponent Venus Williams of the United States following their ladies singles third round match on Day Five of the 2018 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Venus Williams excited about her father’s biopic

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Recently, former Australian tennis player Rennae Stubbs invited Venus on ‘The Racquet Magazine Podcast‘. Among a plethora of interesting questions, Stubbs asked Venus about her feelings on the biopic film being made on her father.

Titled “King Richard”, the movie tells the story of Richard Williams and the way he coached his daughters Venus and Serena to becoming two of the greatest players in the game.

Interestingly, four-time Grammy award winner Will Smith will play the role of their father, and the movie will release later this year.

HOLLYWOOD – MARCH 30: (l-r) Singer Brandy, Keke Palmer, actress Will Smith, actor. Serena Williams, and Venus Williams tennis players pose at the Premiere Of Warner Bros. “ATL” after party held at Memphis club and restaurant on March 30, 2006, in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Hence, Stubbs enquired Venus on whether she has seen some glimpses of the movie and if she had any say in its making. In her reply, Venus mentioned she hasn’t seen the movie but has visited the set twice. However, Venus revealed she has read the script of the movie and experienced different emotions after going through it.

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“I haven’t seen it. I got to go to the set twice, I have read the script. When I read the script, it was moments I forgot about and that I was laughing at. Literally, like laughing and other moments I was teary-eyed,” said Venus.

When the host asked Venus to give an example, the tennis star recalled the way her father used to tell other people: “I am not raising no dumb athletes and my girls will be here while we have dead gone”. 

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The 7-time Grand Slam champion stressed the instrumental role her father played in their careers. It’s been over 25 years since the Williams sisters started competing on the professional tour and are still going strong.

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Kshitij Tayal

367 articles

Kshitij Tayal is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having played district-level tennis competitions, Kshitij is also a tenured journalist of the sport with over four years of experience. At EssentiallySports, he pens down some thought-provoking pieces on players and tournaments across the ATP and WTA.

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