He might be the Fresh Prince, but as of today? Will Smith is officially "King:" the star's latest blockbuster, King Richard, brings an entirely new meaning to his royal status. From playing Venus & Serena Williams' late father to the wild revelations it called for, here's what Smith had to say about his latest on-screen adventure...
For starters, Smith was practically destined to take on the famous role. Not only was he eager to share the Williams' story, but he had to. And we've got a 1995 interview to thank for that one: "There was an interview that Venus was doing - it's a famous interview where Richard Williams snaps on the reporter," Smith recalled of the exchange (below) that changed his entire outlook on life.
No doubt, Richard saw something special in his prodigy daughter. But so did Will. “I saw that in real time, and the look on Venus’ face burned in my heart because that’s how I wanted my daughter to look when I showed up,” the actor revealed. “That interview had really changed my parenting at that time.” Sure enough, that’s not all it did.
Not only did the heated exchange remind Smith what it means to be a parent, but it also marked the moment he "fell in love with Richard Williams." Fast forward to today, and our Fresh Prince has officially come full circle. From admiring the Wimbledon family to joining them on the courts, the actor's time as Mr. Williams has, no doubt, been one for the books.
In case you forgot, the long-awaited biopic follows Smith as Richard Williams: the proud father and coach to Venus and Serena. But he was actually so much more than that. "He predicted Venus and Serena being the world's #1 and #2 women's tennis players two years before they were born! He wrote a 78-page plan," Smith later explained on the Graham Norton Show. "It was a really crazy prophecy... so amazing it's hard to comprehend." Check out the remarkable story for yourselves with King Richard now available for streaming on HBO Max.
And of course, stay tuned.