Will Smith he learned firsthand the determination required for his latest role. Moments after the 53-year-old actor took home the trophy for Best Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role at the 2022 SAG Awards, he exclusively shared with E! News how much his groundbreaking portrayal of him in King Richard.
Explaining that Richard’s daughter, Venus Williams, personally thanked him for “telling the world the truth about (her) dad,” he described his own dad as “that dreamer” who stayed motivated, even in the face of doubt.
“Everyone told him they couldn’t do it,” she tearfully told E!’. As we have mentioned in AmericanPost.NewsThe actor’s father, Willard C. Smith, died in 2016 at the age of 76.
The King Richard actor, who discussed the complicated dynamic between himself and his father in his memoir, noted that Williams and his own father, who was a music promoter, had some things in common.
“Some of the tactics seemed unloving,” he said, “but they were survival tactics that he had to use, he had to employ in love and service to his family.” Smith added: “And they didn’t care what anyone else thought.”
For the actor, who has played countless roles, including Muhammad Ali and Chris Gardner, he feels so grateful for his latest. As he told E!, “It’s a beautiful moment in my life and in my career.” In the 2021 biographical drama film, Smith plays Williams, the famous trainer for his daughters Venus and Serena Williams.
And as Will Smith noted in his acceptance speech, stepping into his father’s shoes was an honor he will never forget. “That may have been one of the greatest moments of my career,” he said while onstage.
Calling Williams a “dreamer like no one you’ve ever met,” he added: “You’re actors, so you know how sometimes your on-screen characters bleed out in real life… to walk you through this room tonight, to be parents.” Doing that in this film has been one of the greatest pleasures of my life.”
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