Your First Look At Will Smith In ‘King Richard’ Is Finally Here - Men's Health Magazine Australia

Your First Look At Will Smith In ‘King Richard’ Is Finally Here

Smith will play Richard Williams, father to Venus and Serena in the new film arriving in theatres late November.
Warner Bros. Pictures

Sport loves an origin story, and when it comes to the birth of legends, you can’t look past the star ascendance of Venus and Serena Williams. The two tennis champions have long dominated the sport, their names being synonymous with sporting greatness. Venus has won seven Grand Slams, whilst Serena has amassed a staggering 23. For those who have watched the stars play, the experience is akin to that of a religious experience, filled with flourishes of excellence that go unmatched by their competitors on the court. But as so many sporting stories often start, this isn’t just a tale of two sisters, it’s also about the coach that launched them into the stratosphere: their dad. 

For the uninitiated, it was father Richard Williams who started his daughters on the path to success. When they were aged just four years old, he had them practising on the weedy, cracked public courts in Compton. It’s been reported that Richard would brawl with the youths who acted tough and refused to make way for the girls’ training, even going so far as to draw up a 78-page plan for his daughters’ professional tennis careers. Of course, the big break came in 1999 when Serena won the US Open, with Venus later beating Lindsay Davenport to win the 2000 Wimbledon title. Richard famously yelled, “Straight Outta Compton” following the victory, jumping over the NBC broadcasting booth. 

While the rest, as they say, is history, it’s clear that much of the success of Venus and Serena Williams is owing to their father. Now, the world will get a closer look at the origin story of tennis’ biggest stars, and the dad who shaped them as a new titled King Richard is scheduled for release this November. Starring as Richard is none other than Hollywood heavyweight Will Smith.

The official synopsis for the film reads: “This profoundly moving film shows the power of family, perseverance, and unwavering belief as a means to achieve the impossible – and truly change the world. Based on the true story, King Richard follows the journey of Richard Williams (Will Smith), an undeterred father raising two of the most extraordinarily gifted athletes of all time – Venus and Serena Williams – who will alter the sport of tennis forever. Witness a father’s vision for his children’s future, his unconventional methods, and his love as he executes a brilliant plan to take his daughters from the streets of Compton, California to the global stage.”

Both Venus and Serena Williams are among the executive producers behind the film, with Venus having said in an interview that the film is about a “revolutionary” man and trailblazer. “It’s really about my dad and how he literally changed the game and how this started,” she said. “He’s a revolutionary kind of person. I love him to death.”

The film is scheduled for a November 19 release date and will also be available on HBO Max for 31 days, following its theatrical release. Check out the trailer below. 

By Jessica Campbell

Jess is a storyteller committed to sharing the human stories that lie at the heart of sport.

More From